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Matthew English, the 25-year-old son of a local daycare owner, was convicted Wednesday in district court of molesting two young girls who were in the care of his mother.
For the two separate incidents, English was sentenced to four years in prison. He could have received six years plus a year — the added year for having committed a prior offense in California — but prosecutor Kent Wahlquist and English’s public defender, Scott Riedel, worked out a plea agreement that took into account that English had already spent 22 months in jail for his crimes. He was arrested in July 2012.
The plea was also arrived at because Wahlquist thought it best to spare English’s victims a trial.
“It wasn’t because one count was weaker than the other, or anything like that, it was because I was reluctant to drag two young girls — I believe they are 8 or 9 now — into court and have them describe to 12 adults what the defendant did to them,” he said to Judge Sheri Raphaelson, the judge presiding over the case.
According to court documents, in each separate incident, English inappropriately touched the girls for a short period of time before they told him to stop.
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