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Christle ordered to leave town

WORTHINGTON -- In a somewhat unusual plea agreement and sentencing, Timothy Nolan Christle was ordered in Nobles County District Court to leave the county as soon as his jail term is complete. He cannot return to Nobles County until after his two year probation term has expired.

Christle pleaded guilty Tuesday to possessing a pistol with a previous felony conviction, impersonating a peace officer and third-degree driving while impaired. The charges stem from three separate cases. Counts of discharging a firearm, reckless driving, contempt of court, driving while impaired and driving after revocation were dismissed in the plea agreement.

He was given jail terms in more than one of the counts, the longest for one year, which is stayed on the condition he serve 150 days in the county jail with credit for the approximate two months her has already served. Within 60 hours of his release he must vacate Nobles County and not enter the county at any time during his probation.

If he does enter the county during the two years, he will be subject to immediate arrest as a probation violation. Part of the plea agreement is that the county and the city of Adrian have agreed not to press charges of terroristic threat for an incident Christle caused in July. If he enters the county before his parole is complete, charges for that incident may be filed.

Christle said he plans to return to Hennepin County, where he had a successful year of sobriety. He plans to seek chemical dependency treatment there, which is court ordered.

Judge Jeffrey Flynn questioned the wisdom of allowing Christle's probation to be unsupervised, wondering how he would be subject to random drug and alcohol testing.

"He will be responsible for his own sobriety, your honor," Nobles County Attorney Gordon Moore replied.

Under questioning, Christle stated he had arrived in the city of Adrian in April 2010 to visit a friend and decided to stay. In the six months he lived in Nobles County, he was arrested multiple times. He stated he was not aware he was not allowed to be in possession of a pistol at the time of his arrest, but is now and does not dispute the charge.

He freely admitted he did impersonate an officer, claiming to be "Ron" from the Hennepin County Narcotics Division so he could check on warrant information of someone he knew.

"So you could tip off a friend?" Moore asked.

"No, just the opposite," Christle replied. "He was my girlfriend's son and he was extorting her for money. I wanted to get him arrested and out of my house."

"So you pretended to be an officer so you could get information the general public didn't have?" Moore asked.

"I can see how it would look that way," Christle admitted.

Moore asked the judge to accept the plea agreement, stating that Christle's legal problems largely stem from alcohol.

"He's going to be required to assume some responsibility in this," Moore said. "The county and city have invested considerable time and resources into him."

Defense attorney Christina Wietzema said her client had no objection to being sentenced right away.

"This is a notable part of the agreement. Within 60 hours of release, get out of the county and stay there, or the city of Adrian will have to exact a levy just to cover the prosecution costs for you," Flynn told Christle. "You seem like a fairly intelligent fellow, but your chemical dependency keeps landing you in an orange jump suit."

"It is baffling, your honor," Christle replied.

Christle was charged with impersonating an officer in Hennepin County in 2005 and has previous convictions for forgery, theft, escaping from custody, disorderly conduct, fleeing from peace officers, driving after suspension, reckless driving, driving while impaired and obstructing the legal process.