Man suspected of sexually abusing girl

A Palisade man was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of repeatedly sexually assaulting a girl with a developmental disability.

Christopher Dewey Booker, 34, was in jail in lieu of a $150,000 bond Wednesday, and he faces the possibility of life in prison if convicted of sex assault on an at-risk juvenile by a person in a position of trust, Mesa County District Attorney Pete Hautzinger said.

“This is about as aggravated as I’ve seen,” Hautzinger said to Mesa County Court Judge Gretchen Larson in arguing for a high bond.

The girl’s mother on Feb. 22 called the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department to report allegations of sex abuse against her daughter.

That day, Booker attempted to commit suicide by taking a large amount of prescription pills and was taken to Colorado West Mental Health and placed on a mental-health hold, according to his arrest affidavit.

On Feb. 23, during an interview at the Western Slope Center for Children, the girl told investigators the incidents with Booker occurred every day after school starting about a year ago, the affidavit said. The girl said she had seen people engaging in sexual acts on a computer that she watched with Booker and mimicked what she watched, the affidavit said.

The man told the girl not to tell anyone, including the police, about the sex acts, she told investigators.

During a phone call Feb. 25 from the Mesa County Sheriff’s Department, Booker denied the allegations when the girl’s mother asked about it, the affidavit said. The girl then got on the phone and told Booker, “... I told our secret ... I just don’t want to do it anymore. I’m sorry,” the affidavit said.

A doctor who conducted a physical exam of the girl on March 16 found no physical evidence of sexual abuse, but said it was possible for the assaults to have happened, the affidavit said. The doctor described the girl’s disclosure as graphic and said she is high-functioning and an “extremely-credible victim,” the affidavit said.


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