Thursday, December 5, 2013
By Betty Adams firstname.lastname@example.org
AUGUSTA — A New York man pleaded guilty Wednesday to a charge of unlawful sexual contact with a 2-year-old girl in Monmouth in 2009 while he and his family visited relatives there.
Lester House Good
Lester House Good, 36, of Troupsberg, N.Y., was scheduled to go on trial Wednesday on that charge in Kennebec County Superior Court, and a jury selected to hear the case waited in a nearby room as he entered his guilty plea. The jurors were then dismissed.
Deputy District Attorney Fernand LaRochelle told Justice Michaela Murphy that the crime occurred on Aug. 9, 2009, when Good went into a room where his young daughter and another young girl were sleeping.
Good later told investigators — including a New York State Police officer — that the sexual contact occurred when he reached under the other child’s diaper.
“It happened for a minute then I left. I feel horrible about it. It only happened for a minute,” LaRochelle quoted Good as telling officers.
The girl told her mother that something had happened, and a teenage girl who had been sleeping in the living room said Good was in the bedroom with the young girls for so long that she looked in and asked Good whether something was wrong.
Neither the girl’s mother nor doctors were able to see any injuries on the child, LaRochelle said.
Good was indicted in June 2012, turned himself in to police July 27, 2012, and was extradited to Maine.
LaRochelle said that in exchange for pleading guilty to the Class A crime — which carries a maximum of 30 years in prison — prosecutors would recommend a sentence of 10 years in prison with all but three years suspended and six years’ probation.
LaRochelle also told the judge that the victim, now 6, was 31 months old when this happened, and that there was a risk to the state’s case if she had to testify on a witness stand.
The judge said that because the allegation involved sexual contact with a child under 12, she would not accept the plea or conduct a sentencing hearing until Good was evaluated and a risk assessment was done. She told him that if she rejected the proposed sentencing agreement after getting all the information, or if issues surfaced during the evaluations, he could withdraw the guilty plea and his case would go back on the trial list.
Murphy ordered him held in lieu of $12,500 cash bail, the same bail that has been in place for the past eight months.
Betty Adams — 621-5631