A Waterville couple accused of long-term sexual abuse of a girl told her she would “lose her guardian angels” if she did not cooperate.

The girl also said the man whipped her and other girls with a belt, and that their food was limited.

Those allegations and others were contained in a court affidavit filed by Waterville police Detective Kyle McDonald in connection with the case against Jennifer L. Stevens, 35.

Stevens and her husband, Michael A. Stevens, 36, are charged with one count each of gross sexual assault in a complaint that says the abuse occurred on Oct. 24, 2010, and Oct. 25, 2014, when the girl was younger than 12 years old.

The couple were arrested Feb. 1 and have been held at the Kennebec County jail in Augusta in lieu of $250,000 cash bail.

A judge who presided at the initial court appearance of Jennifer Stevens on Feb. 2 ordered the affidavit sealed for 30 days, saying that the case involved “very deviant conduct with very young children.” The affidavit was made available Monday at the Capital Judicial Center.

McDonald wrote that the case had been referred for investigation through the District Attorney’s Office from the child protective services division of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services.

He said the girl, now 16, disclosed the abuse to a caseworker, saying it began when she was 9, that both adults sexually assaulted her for years, and that Michael Stevens “would beat her … with a belt.”

The girl said if she did not want to participate in the sexual abuse, the adults told her “she could go clean the house,” McDonald wrote.

The girl said the abuse happened during the day and at night, stopping only when she was living in a homeless shelter in Waterville, and also took place in Fairfield. The girl said the abuse made her so sick that she vomited and “was made to swallow her own vomit” by Michael Stevens.

McDonald said the girl indicated the man took pictures of some of the sexual assaults and “made her swear on her guardian angels that she wouldn’t tell anyone about it.”

McDonald wrote that the girl reported the man threatened to kill himself and that she would “lose her guardian angels” if she reported him. She also was told that if she lied to a guardian angel, “that would allow demons to enter you and you would eventually go to hell.” The girl said she was made to watch movies about exorcisms.

At Jennifer Stevens’ court hearing, lawyer Elizabeth Gray, representing her as attorney of the day, referenced other “ongoing court proceedings” as well as “Ms. Stevens’ heroin addiction.” Neither of the Stevenses is facing drug charges at this point.

Jennifer Stevens, who currently is being represented by attorney Brad Grant, will be in court again on April 5.

At Michael Stevens’ initial court hearing, William Baghdoyan, also acting as lawyer of the day, asked for lower bail, noting that the allegations were 4 to 8 years old. He said Michael Stevens was looking for work and receiving unemployment benefits and was likely to lose his rented home and a truck he recently purchased if he remains in jail. Michael Stevens, who is now represented by attorney Steven C. Smith, is next due in court April 12.

Betty Adams can be contacted at 621-5631 or at:

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