Providence woman asks judge to throw out conviction of sex-offender violation

Jeena Nilson, 58, arrested and charged with six counts of failing to register as a sex offender, a third-degree felony.

LOGAN — A 61-year-old Providence woman, who was found guilty of failing to update her sex-offender registry, is now asking a judge to throw out her conviction. Jeena Nilson filed a request for an acquittal, new trial, or for her three felony convictions to be merged into one.

Nilson appeared in 1st District Court Tuesday afternoon. She was previously found guilty of three counts of failing to register as a sex-offender, a second-degree felony, after a two-day jury trial in October 2017.

Nilson’s defense attorney argued the motions, claiming that state attorneys failed to provide specific evidence for each of the felonies. She also explained that prosecutors didn’t show the jury whether the defendant recklessly failed to comply with the registration process.

State attorney Jacob Gordon disagreed, telling Judge Kevin Allen there were no grounds to grant Nilson’s motion. He reminded the court how a jury found the defendant guilty, and asked that their verdict be respected.

During the October trial, the jury of four men and four women found Nilson guilty of failing to disclose her social media accounts and work at Altius Gymnastics Academy, in her sex-offender registry. The verdict came after several hours of deliberations.

Nilson refused to testify during the trial. Her defense attorney claimed she had updated her registry 33 times. She told the jury, registering was a confusing process and her client didn’t knowingly leave the information out.

In November 2002, Nilson was sentenced to one-to-15 years in prison after pleading guilty to two counts of sex abuse of a child, a second-degree felony.

During Tuesday’s hearing, Judge Allen postponed ruling on the motion. He said he would review attorney’s arguments and issue a written ruling.

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