Logan man confesses to having sex with teenage girl

Booking photo for Jared Mackenzy R. Harper (Courtesy: Cache County Jail).

LOGAN — A 19-year-old Logan man has admitted to having sex with a teenage girl. Jared M. Harper has waived his right to a trial and accepted a plea deal that could still send him to prison.

Harper appeared in 1st District Court Tuesday morning. He pleaded guilty to two counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor, a third-degree felony. As part of the agreement, prosecutors dropped two similar charges against him.

In April, Harper was arrested after he and a co-defendant, 21-year-old Jaren K. Liljenquist, were found providing alcohol and methamphetamine to several underage juveniles. The group would engage in drinking alcohol, using meth, and having sex with each other.

Harper admitted to police that he picked up all three of the teenage girls and two adult men, before driving them to one of the juvenile’s houses in Logan. He claimed that one of the girls told him she was 18 and the other two were either 16 or 17, but later acknowledged to know they were 14.

During Tuesday’s court appearance, defense attorney Shannon Demler asked the court to consider releasing Harper until he is sentenced.

Cache County Deputy Attorney Dane Murray objected. He said the state was still concerned because of the severity of the crimes.

Judge Brian Cannell refused to release Harper but said he would consider giving credit for the 130 days the defendant has already served in jail. He scheduled a sentencing hearing for December 17.

In September, Liljenquist was ordered to complete Drug Court, a weekly rehab program that is overseen by a judge, allowing him to avoid a jail sentence.


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