UPDATE – Feb. 14, 2013 – Case dismissed against LaVerkin man charged with sexual offenses against a child
LAVERKIN – A 20-year-old man was arrested yesterday by LaVerkin City Police Department on two first degree felony charges, one for rape of a child and the other for sodomy of a child.
The incident on which the charges are based was basically a consensual encounter, Laverkin Police Chief Lloyd Watkins said, except that the victim is under-age and cannot give consent. The girl, younger than 13, was not forced, he said.
“That’s a big age spread,” Watkins said.
Watkins said the matter came to the Department’s attention after the girl talked about it to a neighbor, the neighbor talked to LaVerkin Police, and the police then talked with the girl.
“She didn’t really want to tell us,” Watkins said, but she did and told them the person and whereabouts of her offender.
The two first met when the girl and a friend apparently went walking along the road about midnight one night. They saw and met the 20-year-old down by some city buildings near LaVerkin Elementary School. Watkins said that a few days later they began a Facebook conversation, which led to them hanging out together and eventually the young man went with the girl to her home while nobody was there and the relations occurred.
LaVerkin does have a curfew law and Watkins said it is enforced when violations come to the officers’ attention.
The girl lives with her dad, Watkins said. “I don’t believe there is a mother in the picture.”
Among other things, Baldwin was arrested on drug charges two years ago, Watkins said, and had prior drug charges as a juvenile.
“He’s had some extensive involvement with law enforcement,” Watkins said, “but none of it involved sexual offenses.”
Baldwin is expected to be charged by the Washington County Attorney within 48 hours. If convicted he will be a registered sex offender.
Note: Persons arrested are presumed innocent until found guilty in a court of law or as otherwise decided by a trier-of-fact.
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