Investigators say Rexburg man molested young girls
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IDAHO FALLS — A Rexburg man is facing more time in prison after being accused of molesting two elementary-aged school girls in Bonneville County.
In Aug. 2019, the Bonneville County Sheriff’s Office was called after now 23-year-old Jeffery Beau Stanger reportedly told a therapist he molested two elementary-age school girls. According to an affidavit of probable cause obtained by EastIdahoNews.com, Stanger told investigators he acted as the “husband/boyfriend” while playing house when molesting one girl.
After receiving the tip, both of the alleged victims spoke with forensic interviewers. The girls described how Stanger allegedly sexually abused them. While Bonneville County detectives were investigating, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office called, saying they were investigating Stanger for similar sex crimes, according to court documents. Investigators determined at least one of the victims had been abused in both Bonneville and Madison counties.
Madison County detectives interviewed Stanger, who admitted to the molestation. Stanger allegedly told deputies that one of the girls wanted to be a grown-up and tried to make him her boyfriend.
Madison County prosecutors charged Stanger with felony lewd conduct and felony child sex abuse. As part of a plea agreement, the sex abuse charge was dismissed in exchange for Stanger pleading guilty to lewd conduct. On Dec. 21, District Judge Steven Boyce sentenced Stanger to three to 10 years in prison but opted to retain jurisdiction in the case and put Stanger into a rider program.
A rider program is where a criminal is sent to prison for up to a year to undergo different treatment programs. When the inmate has completed the program, the judge can then decide to send them back to prison or release them on probation.
However, before he goes on the rider, he has to take care of two felony lewd conduct charges in Bonneville County. While prosecutors filed the case in 2019, they opted to wait until the conclusion of the Madison County Case to bring Stanger to Idaho Falls. Stanger is now in the Bonneville County Jail awaiting a preliminary hearing on Jan. 15.
If convicted in Bonneville County, a judge could order Stanger to spend up to life in prison.
Although Stanger is charged in Bonneville County, it does not necessarily mean he committed those crimes. Everyone is presumed innocent until proven guilty.