CEDAR RAPIDS — A 15-year-old girl Tuesday said she felt “broken, dirty and alone” last April after a 23-year-old Mechanicsville man, whom she considered a family friend, a “brotherly type,” sexually abused her in three different incidents.
The girl, who was 14 when the abuse happened, said in her victim impact statement that she wanted to throw away the clothes she had on that night, and she continued to feel dirty after an hour in the bathtub. She was “hurt by someone I trusted.” And she felt like it was her fault.
The girl didn’t ask that Jeremy Junge be sentenced to prison, but she did ask for this not to happen to anybody else and asked for an apology from Junge. She wanted him to acknowledge her pain and what she has gone through but realizes “that probably won’t happen, so I will forgive him” in order to move forward.
Junge didn’t apologize. He told the judge he didn’t know why the “allegations” were made but said he accepted the jury’s verdict. He also asked for a deferred judgment and probation.
Sixth Judicial District Judge Mitchell Turner said it was a “difficult decision,” but he couldn’t in “good conscience” give Junge, convicted of third-degree sexual abuse, a deferred judgment, which would expunge the felony conviction from his record if he completed probation. Turner instead suspended the 10-year prison term and sentenced him to five years of probation.
Junge also must be on the sex offender registry for life and serve a special lifetime parole. Judge Turner also ordered a five-year no-contact order against Junge to protect the victim.
The girl testified at the December trial that Junge inappropriately touched her twice and sexually abused her in April 2018 during three incidents. Junge was friends with her brother, and the abuse happened at her brother’s home when she stayed over on weekends to spend time with her niece.
The girl said she had never been “uncomfortable” with Junge before these incidents. He sometimes would sit next to her and put his arms around her, but the physical contact didn’t go beyond that, she testified.
During the trial, a sexual assault nurse examiner said the girl’s injury was consistent with sexual abuse.
Junge took the stand and denied the incidents happened.
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