Charges Dropped In Case Of Woman Accused Of Helping Ex-Fiance Romance Underage Girl

SANTA ANA (CBS) —  Charges were dismissed Friday against a woman accused of helping her former fiance carry on a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl, according to Orange County court records.

Michelle Hecker was charged in July 2008 as an aider and abetter with three felony counts of lewd acts on a child and one count each of statutory rape, oral copulation of a child and digital penetration of a minor.

Those charges were dismissed today, according to court records. It was not immediately clear why.

Hecker’s former fiance, co-defendant Jason Ellis, a prominent photographer, is next scheduled to appear in court for a pretrial hearing May 20.

Hecker met the girl, who shared her passion for horseback riding, when she was 14 years old, according to prosecutors. They alleged she introduced the girl to Ellis to help her with a modeling career.

Between August 2007 and June 2008, Ellis allegedly took the girl on dates to the movies and to dinner while kissing and touching her in public, according to prosecutors.

The girl’s parents eventually grew suspicious and hired a private investigator to follow Ellis and their daughter, prosecutors said.

 (©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)


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