Sex offender might be heading back to jail

By Jeff Hansel

A convicted sex offender faces the possibility of prison after violating his probation.

Robert Michael Buechle, 35, formerly of Rochester, was convicted in December 1998 of first-degree criminal sexual conduct after pleading guilty to having sex with a 12-year-old Rochester girl he met on the Internet.

In April 1999, Buechle was sentenced to one year in prison, a $12,000 fine, no contact with anyone younger than 18 and possess no computer with Internet service.


Buechle has since been found in violation of his probation three times: November 2000, April 2001 and this week.

After the 2001 violation, Judge Robert Birnbaum told Buechle, "You are out of chances. The next time, no matter how minor or technical the violation, it is over."

On Wednesday, Birnbaum again faced Buechle in court and said the seriousness of the latest violations shows "the need for confinement and incarceration outweighs policies favoring treatment and rehabilitation."

Among Buechle's latest violations were failure to complete sex offender treatment, being with children younger than 18 without prior permission, having a computer for personal use and being in possession of pornographic or sexually explicit materials.

Buechle remains in jail awaiting sentencing, which is scheduled for Nov. 23.

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