A Newton man accused of inappropriately touching a child on multiple occasions was bound over for trial following a preliminary hearing before the 1st District Court on Monday.
Judge Brian Cannell found there was probable cause for all charges filed against Harris Duane Griffin.
Griffin, 72, faces five counts of first-degree aggravated sexual abuse of a child.
Cache County prosecutor Dane Murray presented to the court two recorded confrontational phone calls between Griffin and the alleged victim. During the phone call, the alleged victim asks Griffin why the incidents of abuse occurred. Griffin apologized to the victim and responded with what prosecutors argue are incriminating statements: “I thought you wanted me to,” and “Don’t tell anybody.”
Murray also presented to the court a recorded interview with the alleged victim, who described the incidents. The alleged victim said the inappropriate contact happened over her clothes and she was told to keep quiet after each incident.
A Cache County Sheriff’s Office investigator told the court Harris blamed the victim for the incidents, stating she was “egging it on.”
Defense attorney Shannon Demler alluded to hearing impairment issues for Griffin that may have played a role in the investigation. Demler told the court there are “real credibility questions” in the case to be presented at a later time, since preliminary hearings are only intended to determine probable cause for the charges.
Griffin was arrested and booked into the Cache County Jail on May 29 and was released on $100,000 bail.
Griffin was set to appear for further arraignment on Nov. 30.