Richard Verga: Harveysburg Village mayor facing sex charges pleads not guilty

HARVEYSBURG VILLAGE, Ohio -- A Warren County mayor facing charges that he inappropriately touched a coworker pleaded not guilty Thursday in a Warren County Municipal courtroom.

The Warren County Sheriff’s Office says Harveysburg Village Mayor Richard Verga, 75, faces sexual imposition – a third-degree misdemeanor.

"Sexual Imposition requires more than just a he said-she said deal," said Warren County Sheriff Lt. Eric Johnson. "It can't be just one person's word versus another person's word. There has to be some sort of collaborating evidence, which we feel we have in this case."

Johnson said officials launched their investigation May 5.

The case stems from a complaint from Harveysburg Village Clerk Carol Nelson, who claims Verga inappropriately touched her buttocks before a council meeting on April 28.

In a phone interview Verga said, "If that occurred, it was a pure accident. I made a silly comment. I didn't realize what happened."

Verga is expected to appear in court on June 11.

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