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Judge won’t let prosecutor have trial

PRINCETON (AP) — A magistrate judge has denied a West Virginia prosecutor’s request to go to trial on misdemeanor domestic violence charges instead of participating in an intervention program.

Mark Plants is charged with domestic battery of his 11-year-old son. Prosecutors say Plants hit the boy more than 10 times with a leather belt on Feb. 22.

He also is charged with violating a domestic-violence protection order. The order required that Plants stay away from his ex-wife and their sons.

The Charleston Gazette reports that the judge on Friday denied a request to set trial dates on the charges.

He told Plants that he must attend the 32-week batterers intervention program in Putnam County under a previous agreement last month. The charges could be dropped upon completion of the program.

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