After he was arrested on a $500,000 warrant, bail was held at the same amount in Lewis County Superior Court on Friday for a 41-year-old Packwood man facing 10 separate felony charges related to sexual assault of a child under the age of 16.
The Chronicle is choosing not to name the defendant in order to protect the identity of the victim.
Charges include two class A felonies each punishable by fines of up to $50,000 and a maximum sentence of life in prison.
A deputy from the Lewis County Sheriff’s Office first responded to a report about rape of a child at the man’s residence in June.
Forensic evidence and interviews corroborated the child’s statements, according to court records, which prompted Lewis County Superior Court to issue a warrant for the man’s arrest in November.
Court documents allege the incidents between the man and child began in the spring of 2022 and persisted until at least early summer 2023.
In court on Friday, Lewis County Deputy Prosecutor Paul Masiello requested that the initial $500,000 from the arrest be kept as the man’s bail. Along with standard conditions of release, Masiello requested a no-contact order for the victim and that the defendant be prohibited from contacting any minors.
The man had some history of warrants and a felony charge from 2004, which Masiello noted was not a substantial criminal history. Still, due to the nature of the charges, even if “he had nothing on his history,” Masiello said he would request bail at the same amount.
Rachael Tiller, defense attorney, had no objections to the protection order requests, but asked that bail be set at “no higher than $250,000” due to the defendant's financial status.
Judge Joely Yeager accepted the $500,000 bail request.
“I agree, there’s not much to consider as far as his previous (history),” Yeager said. “The concern here are the allegations themselves.”
While allegations are just that, she said, “It’s what the court has to go on at this time.”
Yeager said the “serious” nature of the charges and concern for community safety “and the victim” warranted the high bail amount.
An arraignment hearing is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 22.