South Routt man charged for allegedly molesting juveniles


— A 41-year-old Phippsburg man who threatened to commit suicide earlier this week has been charged with felonies for allegedly molesting two juveniles, one of which is the man's child.

On Friday, Deputy District Attorney Elizabeth Wittemyer filed five charges against the man for the alleged assaults that took place between June 2001 and Tuesday.

The man has been charged with aggravated incest, a class three felony, in one case.

For the second case, the man has been charged with three counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust and as a pattern of sexual abuse, which are class three felonies. He also has been charged with sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust, a class four felony.

Authorities are not identifying the victims' sex or their ages. Authorities will reveal only that the victims are between the ages of 15 and 18.

The man appeared in Routt County Court Friday afternoon. Judge James Garrecht set the man's bail for each case at $50,000.

Routt County Sheriff's deputies took the man in to protective custody Tuesday afternoon, Routt County Undersheriff Daniel Taylor said.

"The man was threatening to commit suicide," Taylor said of the man who was heavily intoxicated at the time.

Taylor said the man was taken to Yampa Valley Medical Center and then booked into the Routt County Jail Wednesday.

At this time, authorities are releasing little information about the alleged assaults.

"There are two victims, and we suspect there are more," Taylor said.

According to the charges, the aggravated incest occurred between January and Tuesday.

The four counts of sexual assault allegedly occurred last summer, September, November and January.

During Friday's court hearing, Wittemyer asked for Garrecht to set the man's bail at $100,000 because of the "severity of the circumstances."

If convicted, "these charges carry a very long time in prison," Wittemyer said.

Kristopher Hammond, who appeared on behalf of the man, said the man's bail should not be set high because he has lived in the county for more than 25 years.

"The state is really asking for no bond," Hammond said. "The request is for a bond he cannot make."

Throughout the court proceeding, the man appeared calm and exchanged glances with members of his family who sat in the courtroom.

The man's next court appearance is scheduled for later this month.


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