87-year-old man accused of soliciting prostitute earns ‘free pass’ from prosecutor


Photo credit: Barton Deiters via MLive.com

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GRAND RAPIDS, MI (September 2, 2015) – An 87-year-old man arrested for allegedly soliciting a prostitute was granted a “free pass” from the prosecutor.

“What would be the purpose in prosecuting him?” Kent County Prosecutor William Forsyth told MLive.com. “He wouldn’t and shouldn’t go to jail, and 87 years without involvement in the criminal justice system has, in my opinion, earned him a pass.”

Howard Arthur Klein, of Grand Rapids, was arrested by police June 26 for soliciting an undercover cop posing as a prostitute.

Klein was not taken to jail, due to his age, and he was arraigned July 8.

Klein told police he didn’t realize he was soliciting the prostitute because he thought the woman he approached was someone he knew from church.

If Klein had been convicted, he faced a maximum of 93 days in the Kent County Jail.

“I could see no compelling reason to continue to prosecute Mr. Klein on the ticket he was issued for accosting and soliciting,” Forsyth told MLive.com. “He is 87 years old with absolutely no criminal record. In addition, I am told he struggles to some degree with dementia.”

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