Molestation no contest gets 6 years
A 32-year-old man has been sentenced six years in prison for molesting four children.
Ronald Lee Pickler pleaded no contest in June to two counts of lewd and lascivious acts with a child under a negotiation agreement with the Yuba County District Attorney's office.
The victims included three females, ages 5, 7 and 8, and an 11-year-old boy, according to court records.
The District Attorney's Office decided it was in the best interests of the children to avoid traumatizing the children who were afraid of testifying.
“The people see this negotiated plea as a tradeoff between the certainty of punishment and protection of society verses the inherent uncertainty of meeting the standard of proof beyond a reasonable doubt of all 12 jurors,” wrote District Attorney Patrick McGrath and Deputy District Attorney Teresa Sydow in the negotiated plea.
Pickler was sentenced Monday.
State law prohibits further traumatizing children in an effort to get convictions.
Pickler allegedly went to the Yuba City Police Department and confessed to an officer that he molested two children before anyone suspected him of a crime, according to court papers. Based on the following investigation, police learned of two more victims.
The molestations occurred between July 1, 2005, and January 2006, according to court records.
One of molestations occurred at one of the victim's houses. Pickler told the girl, “If you tell your mom or dad, I'm going to hurt you,” according to court documents.
He was arrested on Feb. 28.
Pickler must submit blood and DNA samples for a state databank and must register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.
Appeal-Democrat reporter Daniel Witter can be reached at 749-4712. You may e-mail him at firstname.lastname@example.org.