Desoto County News

Update: Sentencing set for man who pleaded guilty on child sex charges

A September sentencing date has been set for a Pennsylvania man arrested by Hernando police in December 2021 on child sex charges.

Police arrested Samuel James Hugg of Mars, Pennsylvania in December 2021, stating they believed he came to DeSoto County from Pennsylvania for the purpose of meeting a 13-year-old girl for sexual purposes. 

A traffic stop was done in an attempt to catch the suspect police said they had been in contact with for several days. This became a little more than a normal traffic stop, however, when the suspect tried to get away and produced a handgun while in the middle of a struggle.

Police said the suspect fired one round with the gun, but the shot hit him across the chest. 

Officers were able to gain control and put handcuffs on the suspect before paramedics arrived and took him to a hospital, where he was treated for what the police department referred to as “non-life-threatening injuries.”

According to a news release, the suspect was identified as Samuel James Hugg, then age 28 of Mars, Pennsylvania.  Police report he had been involved in sexually-explicit conversations over the past few days with the 13-year-old girl in regards to meeting her in Mississippi for sexual purposes. 

On Thursday, Aug. 3, DeSoto County District Attorney Bob Morris said Hugg entered a guilty plea to Count 1 of child enticement on March 7 and the case was continued for sentencing. That count carries a maximum of 40 years, day for day. Hugg is scheduled for a sentencing hearing on Sept. 21.

Morris said in an email there appeared to have been an issue raised by Hugg asking Judge Celeste Wilson to recuse herself and that request led to a delay. The motion was denied on July 13, so the case can now move forward.

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