73-year-old man charged with sexually abusing two children over several years

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Vernal G. Adams | Bonneville County Jail

IDAHO FALLS — A 73-year-old Idaho Falls man has been charged with two felonies after police say he sexually abused two children for years.

Vernal G. Adams is charged with lewd conduct with a child under 16 and sexual abuse of a minor under 16.

Police found out about Adams from Child Protective Services. One of the victims, who is now a teenager, told a counselor she had been sexually abused by Adams, according to court documents obtained by EastIdahoNews.com.

The victim’s family noticed she was acting unusual and when they checked her cell phone, court documents show they found text messages she had sent to friends describing the alleged abuse.

Investigators contacted Adams and he initially said he had no recollection of the alleged abuse. After further questioning, Adams said he touched one of the girl’s breasts under her clothing when she was approximately 13. He also told police he touched the first victim “when she was little bitty (around 5-years-old),” according to court documents.

Adams babysat the victims in his Idaho Falls, Ammon and Rexburg homes over the years. The alleged abuse happened multiple times and one of the girls told police Adams would say “that it’s our secret game that we play” while he molested her.

At times, Adams told investigators he doesn’t remember the alleged abuse but also said he feels guilty for touching one of the girls.

As some of the alleged incidents occurred when Adams lived in Rexburg, he could face charges in Madison County.

Adams was booked and released from the Bonneville County Jail on Sept. 19. He is scheduled to appear for a preliminary hearing on Oct. 10.