OKC Man Faces 58 Sex Crime Counts for Allegedly Raping Three Teens

An 18-year-old woman came to police and accused a man of repeatedly raping her and two other girls, aged 15 and 17, leading to the arrest of an Oklahoma City man on 58 complaints of child sexual abuse. James Ronald Ross, 65, was booked into the Oklahoma County Jail and held on $580,000 bond. As of this writing, he has not been formally charged.

Details of the Case

Reports say the young woman said that Ross had been forcibly raping her and the other two girls over a period of four years. She told police that he threatened to "cut her throat and throw her down a well" if she reported the rapes. Investigators say they questioned the two other girls the initial accuser mentioned, and that the two teens confirmed that they, too, had been repeatedly raped.

When approached by law enforcement, the suspect reportedly tried to slit his wrists. He was treated by paramedics and released into police custody to be transported to jail.

Remember, all defendants are innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law. Accusation of a crime is not an indication of guilt.

Sexual abuse of a child--along with child abuse, child neglect, and sexual exploitation--is defined and penalized under 21 O.S. § 843.5. Under this statute, anyone who "willfully and maliciously" engages in sexual abuse of a child is guilty of a felony punishable by a maximum of life in prison. If the child involved is under the age of 12, the crime carries a minimum penalty of 25 years.

Unlike the Oklahoma's other child molestation law, Lewd or Indecent Acts or Proposals to a Child Under 16 (21 O.S. § 1123), child sexual abuse implies some sort of responsibility of the accused to provide for the welfare of the child. Often, this is a parental, familial, or custodial relationship. Because of the nature of the relationship between the accused and the victims, child sexual abuse allows criminal charges if the victim is under the age of 18, rather than 16 as in lewd acts. 

Although the formal charges have not yet been filed, and the defendant has not been convicted of any crime, a 65-year-old man facing the possibility of 58 life sentences has grim prospects of getting out of prison in his lifetime if convicted.

Sex Crimes Legal Defense

Skillful defense representation is a must in any sex crime case.  If you have been accused of sexual abuse of a child, lewd acts with a minor, rape, or any other sex offense, it is important that you insist upon your right to remain silent and your right to an attorney.

Do not talk to anyone about the charges, do not attempt to contact your accuser, and do not answer police questions in an attempt to clear your name. Let us protect your rights and speak on your behalf to avoid self-incrimination and the use of your own words against you. Call now for help. 

Image Credit: Keith Allison

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