Joshua Winters Pleads Not Guilty To Kidnapping And Sex Crimes
A Colorado man and former carnival worker will be mentally evaluated, in a case where he is accused of taking a young boy from a bowling alley and having sexual contact with him.
Thirty-three year old Joshua Winters has pleaded not guilty and not guilty by reason of mental illness to one count of kidnapping, one count of first degree sexual abuse of a minor, and one count of second degree sexual abuse of a minor.
Investigators with the Casper Police Department say while at the El Marko Lanes Bowling Alley in middle July, Winters approached a group of juveniles playing video games, and provided some money, and then later joined in.
A friend of the young male victim said Winters wanted the boys to help him find his missing money and not to tell their mother.
Other friends went home, and the victim said Winters took him to the river, got undressed, went into the water, then pulled him in submerging him.
Afterwards Winters put the victim on the bank, removed his clothing and had sexual contact.
The victim was found a short time later by a citizen, who took him to the Mills Police Department.
The citizen noted that the victim had a lot of sand on him and the victim said if he screamed or told anyone what had happened, Winters would kill him.
When interviewed, Winters said he was pursuing a thief who had taken his backpack, and the thief had fallen into the river, so he saved him, but then Winters passed out a short time later.
When asked about the victim's claims about what had happened, he said he didn't care.
Earlier on the day of the incident, he had quit his job as a carnival worker, for the company that was at the Central Wyoming Fair and Rodeo.
Winters is being held on $250,000 bond, awaiting trial and a mental evaluation.
He could face between 20 years to life in prison on the kidnapping charge, between 25-to-50 years in prison, on the first degree sexual abuse of a minor charge, and up to 20 years in prison on the second degree sexual abuse of a minor charge if convicted.
The carnival company that he was working for operates independently, and company employees are not actual employees of the Central Wyoming Fairgrounds, or the fair itself.