April 08, 2020

Man gets 10 years for sex abuse Sentence imposed in 15-year-old case

BANGOR – The Bangor man sentenced last week to 14 years in federal prison for possessing child pornography was sentenced Tuesday in state court for sexually assaulting a boy more than 15 years ago.

Jacques Croll, 46, was sentenced in Penobscot County Superior Court to 20 years in state prison with all but 10 suspended. In a plea agreement with prosecutors, he pleaded guilty Tuesday to gross sexual assault and two counts of gross sexual misconduct with a minor under the age of 14.

Superior Court Justice Joseph Jabar also sentenced Croll to six years of probation. Jabar ordered that the state sentence, including probation, run concurrently with the federal sentence, which included 10 years of federal probation.

Croll faced a maximum of 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $50,000.

Neither the male victim, now 27, nor the defendant spoke Tuesday during the 20-minute hearing.

Croll claimed that he possessed child pornography as a way to curb his pedophilia and told authorities that he kept the images to control his urge to harm children sexually, according to federal court documents.

Jeffrey Silverstein, Croll’s Bangor attorney, told the judge Tuesday that before his arrest last year, Croll had worked two jobs to keep himself occupied.

Due to his 1984 convictions, Croll was required to register as a sex offender. Bangor police, acting on a tip last November, found pictures of nude children at his home.

Croll was convicted in 1984 on two counts of unlawful sexual contact – one in Penobscot County and the other in Washington County. The Machias case involved more than three dozen victims, according to court documents. He served four years in prison on the charges.

Last November, police asked for permission to search Croll’s Palm Street apartment after a friend of his tipped off authorities to the presence of child pornography on his computer, according to court documents.

Inside a safe in Croll’s pantry, police found a brown notebook that contained numerous images of nude boys that appeared to have been printed off the Internet.

In another folder, police found Polaroid photographs of an underage boy taken in the late 1980s and early 1990s, including one that showed Croll performing oral sex on the boy he identified only by his first name, according to court documents.

Police tracked down the victim through witnesses, school records, old police files and interviewed the boy, who is now an adult. He said that while he was between the ages of 9 and 12, he had sexual encounters with Croll, and that the pictures were taken while he was drunk at Croll’s residence.

The boy fled the state in 1991 to live with his father in Florida when the sexual abuse escalated to sexual intercourse, Michael Roberts, deputy district attorney for Penobscot County, told the judge Tuesday.

Charges could be brought against Croll for the sexual abuse because the Maine Legislature in 1999 passed a bill that lifted the six-year statute of limitations for unlawful sexual contact and unlawful sexual abuse of a minor under that age of 16. The crimes of rape and incest also are exempt from deadlines on charges.

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