A Casper man will serve three to five years in prison as part of a plea deal in a nearly two-decade old child sex abuse case, a prosecutor said Friday.

Bruce Sloyer pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent liberties with a minor, Assistant District Attorney Kevin Taheri said after the change of plea hearing in Natrona County District Court.

Sloyer, who was 61 when arrested last year, will serve the three- to five-year prison term for one count. The second count will be a three- to five-year term consecutive to the first, but it will be suspended if he successfully completes five years of supervised probation, Taheri said. While they are the same crime, they happened on two different dates. The penalty is under a previous version of the law, he added.

Judge Daniel Forgey ordered a pre-sentence investigation, which probably will be finished in about two months, he added. The judge is not bound by the plea agreement reached by the prosecution and defense.

In September, Sloyer was charged with two counts of sexual assault in the second degree, two counts of taking indecent liberties with a minor and two counts of incest. If the case had gone to trial and he was convicted on all counts, he could have been sentenced to between four and 70 years in prison.

The case started on Sept. 13, when one of Sloyer's neighbors made a report to the Casper Police Department, according to court records.

The neighbor said they had been speaking with Sloyer when his wife made a comment that the neighbor should be careful about having him around the neighbor's daughter, as he was a sex offender.

Later that day, Sloyer went to the police station and explained that his wife had accused him of being a sex offender because he did "some things" about two decades ago, and he should have faced criminal charges. Sloyer said he had sexually abused a young girl several times but did not tell anyone.

An investigator with the Natrona County Sheriff's Office found a report from the Wyoming Department of Family Services that on Feb. 23, 2000, the alleged victim -- then 13 -- had disclosed sexual abuse by Sloyer.

In an interview on Sept. 14, the investigator interviewed the victim who said she was 11 years old when Sloyer first touched her inappropriately on her back and upper thigh.

The victim further discussed other incidents near Christmas in 1999 and Valentine's Day in 2000.

Sloyer, she added, often complimented her or gave her special items like cookies when she was in trouble with her mother as a way to build his relationship with her and allow him to sexually abuse her.

Sloyer was arrested on Sept. 14. He admitted lying to law enforcement during the 2000 investigation because he was scared, and admitted he sexually abused the victim.

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