Area man faces sexual assault charges

September 05, 2002|by MARLO BARNHART

A 53-year-old Williamsport man has been charged with second-degree rape for allegedly trying to have sexual intercourse with his 10-year-old granddaughter on at least two occasions, according to the Washington County Sheriff's Department.

The man, whose name is being withheld to protect the identity of his granddaughter, is scheduled for a preliminary hearing on Sept. 12, according to Investigator Kenny Barnhart of the Washington County Sheriff's Department.

In addition to rape, Washington County District Court records show the man also faces charges of child abuse/parent, third-degree sex offense, second-degree assault, and contributing to the condition of a child.


Charged on Aug. 16, the man was released from the Washington County Detention Center the same day after posting $50,000 bond, jail officials said Wednesday.

Barnhart's investigation began when the victim's father called the sheriff's department on Aug. 15 to report that his daughter, now 10, had been sexually molested by her paternal grandfather for the past two years.

That same day, Barnhart met with the child and her parents for an interview with staff at Safe Place, the county's child advocacy center on Walnut Street, court records said.

The child told Barnhart that her grandfather began touching her inappropriately when she was about 7 years old, court records said.

This would happen when she visited her grandfather - inside his house, outside his house in a trailer, on a bench in a field behind his house and several times at her house, court records said.

The parents told Barnhart the child was talking with her father in late July and told him of the incidents.

A conviction on a charge of second-degree rape carries a maximum 20-year sentence; a sex offense and assault charge conviction each carry a 10-year sentence; the maximum for contributing/conduct is three years in prison.

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