Prison for Red Lion-area man who repeatedly exposed himself to a girl

Liz Evans Scolforo

A Windsor Township man must serve state prison time for exposing himself to a girl over a three-year period.

Michael Lawone Lake, 53, of Kelly Circle was sentenced to 2½ to five years in prison by Common Pleas Judge Maria Musti Cook, who determined Lake to be a sexually violent predator, according to senior deputy prosecutor Sarah Buhite.

The designation of sexually violent predator means Lake must register with state police for the rest of his life, Buhite said, and notifications must be made if he moves to an area. Notification recipients include schools, day-care centers, neighbors, victims and county Children, Youth and Families personnel, she said.

Lake must report to prison Jan. 5, court records state.

The prison sentence he received was the one recommended in a pre-sentence investigation done by the county probation department, Buhite said.

"Based on the circumstances of the case and his prior record, the sentence is probably fair," said Suzanne Smith, who represented Lake. "We were not happy with the sexually violent predator finding."

Tearful apology: Smith said her client apologized in open court to his victim, crying throughout his apology.

Lake pleaded guilty March 2 to three misdemeanors — unlawful contact with a minor, indecent exposure and corruption of a minor. As part of his plea, charges including involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child were dismissed.

Lake admitted to exposing himself to the girl over a three-year period, but did not admit to performing sex acts on the girl, as York Area Regional Police had alleged when they arrested Lake in July 2013.

Michael Lake

The case: Police said Lake molested the girl at locations in Windsor Township, Red Lion and Dallastown between 2003 and 2006, starting when the girl was 12.

Detective Donald Hopple Jr. filed charges in 2013 after the victim, who is now an adult, made a complaint about Lake.

The girl reported the molestation to Lake's wife, Sheila Lake, but Sheila Lake never called authorities, police have said.

Sheila (Wells) Lake, 49, pleaded guilty March 2 to child endangerment and was sentenced to two years of probation.

Buhite has said the victim approved of the Lakes' plea agreements.

Defrauded customers: At the time of their guilty pleas, the Lakes were on probation for defrauding customers.

They had been charged with running a corrupt organization, and each faced more than 50 criminal charges.

The two, along with Michael Lake's ex-wife, Marie E. Lake of York, previously owned and ran two Red Lion businesses — Auto Credit Sales and Broadway Performance, and Broadway Auto Sales.

Michael and Sheila Lake pleaded guilty in November 2008 to deceptive business practices, theft by deception and conspiracy to commit theft by deception.

He was sentenced to 2½ to 10 years in state prison, followed by 10 years of probation.

Sheila Lake was sentenced to 14 days in prison and 10 years of probation. Marie Lake pleaded guilty May 30 to her role in the conspiracy and was sentenced to time-served plus eight years of probation.

The Lakes are responsible for paying $184,000 in restitution, according to court officials.

Racketeering case: Chief deputy prosecutor Tim Barker has said the Lakes' businesses were "front companies" for racketeering activities by Michael Lake.

Accusations included that the trio passed bad checks, stopped payment for services or goods that were already provided to them and misrepresented the quality of their cars or the services they provided. All three were criminally charged in 2006.

After charges were filed, prosecutors seized cars, motorcycles and other property that appeared to be related to the case, Barker has said. Some bank accounts were frozen as well, he said.

Barker confirmed the building that housed the businesses was turned over to a mortgage company, and that Michael and Sheila Lake's home was foreclosed on.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at