Charges dismissed in Butler County against Punxsutawney Phil

PITTSBURGH (AP) - The Butler County prosecutor has dismissed charges against Punxsutawney Phil for fraudulently predicting spring.

"It appearing to the Prosecutor that Punxsutawney Phil has a defense with teeth in it - his handler stepped up to the burrow to take full responsibility for misinterpreting said Defendant's prediction of an early Spring - the charge against Punxsutawney Phil is hereby dismissed," a court document states.

Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser light-heartedly filed charges against the famous Pennsylvania groundhog last week.

On Monday, Bill Deeley, president of the Punxsutawney Groundhog Club's Inner Circle said the animal rightly predicted six more weeks of winter but Deeley tells The Associated Press he mistakenly announced an early spring because he failed to correctly interpret Phil's "groundhog-ese."

The Groundhog Day celebration in Punxsutawney, a borough about 65 miles northeast of Pittsburgh, attracts worldwide attention each year.

Deeley says the prosecutor's indictment of Phil has generated more publicity than a $10,000 ad campaign.

Copyright 2013 WXIX. All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.