On Aug. 6, a DC Superior Court judge decided that a sex abuse defendant should remain in jail, but gave the defense time to look for appropriate possible release conditions before they reconvene for another hearing in five days.
The 30-year-old defendant is charged with first-degree child sex abuse. He is accused of abusing a young girl on multiple occasions in what the prosecution alleges to be “an escalating pattern of abuse.” According to court documents, the defendant allegedly confessed to the abuse via text messages to a member of the victim’s family.
The defendant has been held at DC Jail since he picked up the case in late June. He previously waived his right to a preliminary hearing, which is meant to determine if a case has enough evidence to go to trial.
Defense attorney Rachel McCoy argued that her client should be released with a stay away order from the victim. She said the defendant’s alleged abuse was based on the specific nature of his relationship with the victim, which she argues indicates he would not pose a danger to other children. McCoy also noted that the defendant has no prior criminal record.
However, the prosecution maintained that the defendant would pose a significant danger to children in the community if released. They also argued that there was no guarantee the defendant would not commit crimes while on pretrial release.
“It is a very close question,” said Judge Neal Kravitz.
Judge Kravitz said GPS monitoring could assist the court in making sure the defendant complied with a stay away order. However, he raised concerns over the lack of information about where the defendant would stay if he were released, including if there are children living in that location or if it is near a school.
Judge Kravitz continued the hearing to Aug. 11 so the defense could look into appropriate possible release conditions.