- Associated Press - Thursday, January 8, 2015

BAD AXE, Mich. (AP) - A couple accused of keeping their 19-year-old adopted son in a cage at their home in rural eastern Michigan made a plea deal Thursday and face sentencing in March.

Karen and Timothy Tolin each pleaded no contest to a charge of unlawful imprisonment in Huron County District Court, county Prosecutor Timothy J. Rutkowski said. In exchange, prosecutors dropped a charge of vulnerable adult abuse against each of them.

The pleas came one day before Karen Tolin, 65, and Timothy Tolin, 66, were scheduled to go before a judge for a hearing on whether there was enough evidence to send them to trial. They face sentencing March 9 and remain free on bonds of $5,000 each.

The unlawful imprisonment charge carries a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

“It’s a sad circumstance all around,” Rutkowski said. “He’s in a situation where he should have been cared for.”

Sheriff Kelly J. Hanson has said a deputy answering a civil dispute call Oct. 20 found the 19-year-old in a bedroom at the home in Paris Township, about 90 miles north of Detroit.

Authorities removed three adults and two children from the home, which the state says was not a licensed care facility.

The 19-year-old is now living in a group home elsewhere in the county and attending school.

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