Natrona County Man Pleads Guilty to Molesting Five Year Old
The crime happened at a large gathering, among friends and family.
A young man, 20, was home for the holidays, giving piggy-back rides to the children.
When asked what happened that night, Kenneth Ryan Jones told investigators that "dark thoughts began to enter his mind."
Whether he premeditated the sexual assault or seized an opportunity, Jones victimized a five-year-old child.
Jones appeared in Natrona County District Court for a change of plea hearing today before Judge Catherine Wilking.
Jones was charged with second degree sexual asault, third degree sexual assault, and child endangerment.
Public Defender Joseph Cole told Judge Catherine Wilking his client would be withdrawing their request for a second mental health evaulation, and entering guilty pleas with a plea deal in place.
The judge told the court that in the first evaluation the evaluator did not believe that Jones lacked the capacity to appreciate the wrongfulness of the offense.
In exchange for Jones' guilty pleas, the prosecutor agreed to dismiss the first charge, with the second and third charges to run concurrently. If the judge agrees after reviewing presentence investigation materials, Jones will be sentenced to 70-100 months (roughly six to eight years) imprisonment.
Jones also faces charges in Washington state for possessing child pornography. The judge in Washington agreed to dismiss those charges if Jones pleads guilty to the charges Natrona County.
Wilking accepted Jones' guilty pleas. Sentencing will take place at a later date.
The investigation began in April 2020 when Jones admitted to a counselor that he had inapropriately touched a child.
This was further corroborated by the victim at the Children's Advocacy Project in a forensic interview.
Witnesses also said that in January 2020 Jones was seen watching anime porn and masturbating while three children were present.
Court records state that Jones admitted to the allegations and told a detective, "I try not to be a pedophile as much as possible because I... well it's sort of interesting. It's kind of scary, illegal, and interesting at the same time." Jones did not know why pedophilia was against the law and admitted to looking up the "rules" of different states, according to the police affidavit accompanying the charges.
In a separate investigation, court records about Jones possibly molesting a young girl in the bathroom of a school, Jones admitted to have a four-step process to "groom" children, writing out:
1. "Get to know him or her."
2. Ask him or her questions."
3. "Act it out."
4. "DON'T GET CAUGHT."
The case was not prosecuted as the victim was non-verbal and unable to testify.