No jail for man who sexually assaulted girls

A Clifton man who used candy and cash to lure young girls before sexually assaulting them faces probation, and will serve no time in jail, under the terms of a plea agreement.

Jesse Dale Baker, 67, who was arrested just before Halloween 2007 on multiple felony counts of sexual assault on a child, pleaded no contest Monday to a misdemeanor charge of unlawful sexual contact.

Under the plea deal, Baker will register as a sex offender, must complete intensive sex-offender treatment and serve a yet-to-be determined period of probation. The deal says that District Judge Thomas Deister cannot order jail time, electronic home monitoring, house arrest or any other form of detention.

Baker on Monday entered an “Alford plea,” a reference to a U.S. Supreme Court decision that allows defendants to plead guilty in order to avoid harsher penalties, while still denying the allegations.

Baker was allowed to remain free on bond. He will be sentenced in March.

Baker was arrested on allegations he provided candy and cash to three girls, at the time ages 4 through 12, in order to get them into his home where he molested or assaulted two of them, according to an arrest affidavit.

He was charged with two counts of sexual assault on a child, and three counts of child enticement.

The girls told investigators that Baker had threatened to harm their parents, or have them hauled away by police, if they told anyone about the assaults, the affidavit said.

Deputy District Attorney David Waite said two of the three girls have since returned to their native Mexico, where they live with their father.

Baker denied the assaults and said he invited the girls into his home to do odd jobs, the affidavit said.

Waite said health problems involving Baker have delayed the case more than two years.


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