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Second grader reports weeks-long sexual assault on second day of school

GREAT FALLS, Mont. — A Montana man has been arrested and charged with felony sexual intercourse without consent involving a 7-year-old girl.

Court charging documents state Gerardo Reyes Jr., 23, was arrested and taken into police custody after the girl told a teacher about the alleged abuse.

A Great Falls Police Department affidavit filed Aug. 31 states that the unidentified victim reported the abuse on the second day of school.

According to the affidavit, school officials called the Department of Family Services, who in turn called the Great Falls Police Department. The little girl was taken to the Cascade County Child Advocacy Center, where investigators completed a forensic interview.

The victim’s recorded testimony was both graphic and detailed, and she allegedly told investigators that the assaults had occurred on a number of occasions.

The police affidavit states that the victim claimed to have told her mother about the assaults, but her mother allegedly told her that “it must have been a mistake” and that Reyes, Jr. “must have just placed his hand on her butt.”

Reyes also allegedly told the little girl not to tell anyone about the incidents, and that it was a secret.

After the interview with the alleged victim, police detectives spoke with the mother. The police affidavit states that the mother confirmed her daughter had told her what had happened, but she only understood this to mean that Reyes had placed his hand on the girl’s hip.

Detectives spoke with Reyes, who agreed to come to the police department for an interview.

Reyes was arrested and charged with felony sexual intercourse without consent. He was transported to Benefis Health System for a suspect sexual assault examination, then taken to the Cascade County Detention Center.

Under Montana law, if an offender 18 years of age or older is convicted of felony sexual intercourse without consent with a victim who is 12 years old or younger “the offender shall be punished by imprisonment in a state prison for a term of 100 years” and may be fined up to $50,000. Such an offender would not be eligible for parole for the first 25 years of imprisonment.

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