A Bingham man with a history of convictions for sexual crimes was arrested this week on charges he sexually assaulted two children younger than 14, the Somerset County Sheriff’s Office said Tuesday.

Christopher C. Cates Somerset County Sheriff’s Office photo

Christopher C. Cates, 48, was arrested Monday on charges that include unlawful sexual contact, unlawful sexual touching and indecent conduct, Sheriff Dale Lancaster said in a statement to the news media.

Cates is accused of assaulting two girls earlier this year in Moscow. The Sheriff’s Office opened an investigation in July after receiving a tip, Lancaster said.

The case was forwarded to Detective Jeremy Leal, who gathered enough information over several weeks to submit a probable cause affidavit, prompting a judge to approve an arrest warrant for Cates, Lancaster said.

Cates has at least seven convictions over a 10-year period for offenses that included unlawful sexual contact, indecent contact and prohibited contact with a child younger than 14, Lancaster said. Cates’ most recent conviction was in 2021.

Following his arrest Monday, Cates was taken to the Somerset County Jail in Madison, where he later posted $25,000 cash bail and was released. He has an initial court appearance scheduled for Nov. 8 in Skowhegan.

Conditions of Cates’ bail include he have no contact with the alleged victims or their families and he not contact anyone younger than 18.

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