Charges dismissed against South Portland man

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CAPE ELIZABETH — Charges of unlawful sexual contact in April against a South Portland man have been dropped.

Jose L. Pinto-Zarate, 30, said he arrived at Cumberland County Superior Court on June 12 for his initial appearance and found the Cumberland County District Attorney’s Office was not going to pursue the case.

A court document dated June 11 said prosecutors “will not be charging this offense at this time.” Tamara Getchell, spokeswoman for the DA’s office, said the case was dropped because of insufficient evidence.

Pinto-Zarate was arrested in South Portland early in the morning of April 29 after a 37-year-old Cape Elizabeth woman claimed misconduct occurred when the two met the day before.

Pinto-Zarate said he and the woman got together for drinks on April 28, after becoming acquainted online. He noted accusations that he stole cash and a cell phone from her were disproved shortly after his arrest.

“I couldn’t believe they arrested me, they had nothing,” Pinto-Zarate said this week.

David Harry can be reached at 781-3661 ext. 110 or dharry@theforecaster.net. Follow him on Twitter: @DavidHarry8.

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Portland City Hall reporter for The Forecaster. Baltimore native, lived in Maine since 1989. A journalist since 2005, covering much of Cumberland and York counties. I joined The Forecaster in 2012.