LOGAN — Charges have been dropped against a 61-year-old Smithfield woman accused of bribing children with money, to expose themselves to her.
Margarita Ibarria appeared in 1st District Court Thursday afternoon for a preliminary hearing. She faced three charges of sexual exploitation of a child, a third-degree felony and lewdness involving a child, a class A misdemeanor.
State attorney Barbara Lachmar told the court she had the evidence to go forward but asked for the charges to be dropped because of the statute of limitations, the time allowed to file a court case.
Outside the courtroom, Lachmar explained the victim reported the allegations in 2012, saying they occurred four years earlier, in 2008.
“I was getting ready for the prelim and I was like, ‘oh my gosh’ they are talking about this happening in 7th grade and they are sixteen,” said Lachmar. “That means I’ve lost jurisdiction.”
During the hearing, Judge Brian Cannell told the court in light of the statute of limitations, he would reluctantly dismiss the charges without prejudice.
State law says prosecuting a felony must happen within four years of it being committed.
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