Billionaire pleads guilty to sexual assault charge

Scales of justice
Scales of justice
RACINE (AP) - A Wisconsin billionaire has pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of having sexual contact with a teenage girl.

Fifty-nine-year-old Samuel "Curt" Johnson III of Racine was originally charged with a felony charge of child sexual assault. But prosecutors sought to downgrade the charge after they say the victim and her mother refused to cooperate.

Before sentencing Friday, Johnson apologized to the victim and her mother for the "tremendous hurt I have caused."

Judge Eugene Gasiorkiewicz allowed the downgrade of charges. He was mulling a sentence Friday up to the maximum one year in jail.

Johnson's family has run home-products giant SC Johnson for five generations. Johnson worked for the company decades ago but has had no formal relationship with the company in years.