Hilton principal accused of sexually abusing students has bail lowered


ROCHESTER, NY (WROC) — Kirk Ashton was back in court again Friday, in person at the Monroe County Hall of Justice. Ashton is accused of sexually harassing over 30 students at the Northwood Elementary School in Hilton. His lawyer, Jason Housel, asking for the judge to lower bail from $250,000 so Ashton can pay the bail.

Housel argued Ashton only has $20,000 in his bank account. He asked the bail be lowered to that amount. The judge instead setting bail at $175,000.

Amanda Balling, the Assistant District Attorney, said to keep Ashton locked up. She added if Ashton is let out, he’s a flight risk and he has no community to go back to. He’s in the middle of a divorce and the public is outraged.

“He does not have the same resources to turn to that he had prior to being charged with three offenses. The court must consider an individual’s financial circumstances. That for Kirk Ashton is significant,” says Balling.

Balling said Ashton is still getting paid $160,000 a year from the Hilton School District and has $600,000 in assets. In other words, she feels he can pay the bail as it is set now, but it’s something his lawyer says he can’t touch due to divorce proceedings.

“He’s been incarcerated in excess of three months with substantial bail. If this was true that he had all these assists he clearly would not be in custody,” says Housel.

The judge said if Ashton can pay the $175,000 bail, he will be subject to electronic monitoring and must make his trial.

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