Man Pleads In Indecent Assault Case
A Big Cove Tannery man accused of the indecent assault of a young boy remains incarcerated in the Franklin County Prison this week after making an appearance in Fulton County Court of Common Pleas for mandatory arraignment.
Sixty-one-year-old James Edward Brown was arrested by Pennsylvania State Police Trooper Michael Davis in late September on 12 counts of indecent assault, four counts of indecent exposure and one count of the corruption of minors. He has remained in custody in lieu of $100,000 bail.
In appearing before Judge Carol L. Van Horn on Tuesday, November 15, Brown waived arraignment proceedings and entered a plea of guilty to one count of indecent assault of a person less than 13 years old and the corruption of minors.
According to an affidavit of probable cause filed in the case through Magisterial District Judge Carol Jean Johnson, Brown has made a Thompson Township home his residence for the last three years.
The accusations against Brown emerged on September 24 when a woman advised the investigating officer at the McConnellsburg barracks her 11-year-old son had been “sexually assaulted.”
In the charging documents, Trooper Davis reported the boy and Brown would occasionally watch television together. During those visits, the boy would sit at the bottom of the bed and Brown would usually sit on the side of the bed with his laptop computer, the trooper said.
“The victim related the defendant (Brown) watches pornography on the laptop while the victim is in the room watching television ... . He (Brown) shows the pornography to the victim from time to time,” the affidavit alleges.
During an interview with the male victim, the boy told the trooper that on four occasions watching television, Brown allegedly touched him inappropriately through his clothing. Telling Brown his actions were hurting him, Brown would reportedly let go of the child, stated the affidavit.
In those same encounters, pobefore lice reported Brown is accused of exposing himself to the child and asking the boy to touch him inappropriately as well. The incidents are believed to have begun on April 1, 2010, and the most recent encounter occurred on September 16.
In an admission of guilt to Judge Van Horn on Tuesday, Brown initially told the court he and the boy were just “carrying on” and he pinched him back in his private parts. He also admitted to watching pornography on his computer and that the boy saw the images.
Fulton County District Attorney Travis Kendall stated allegations have been brought to light that additional juveniles may have seen the pornography. However, charges related to that effect will not be filed as a result of the negotiated plea with Brown.
Brown is represented by defense attorney Dwight Harvey. His next scheduled court appearance will be for sentencing on February 14. Due to the indecent assault following under Megan’s Law, a sexual offenders assessment will be completed prior to sentencing.