LOGAN — A preliminary hearing has been scheduled for a 46-year-old Logan man charged with sexually abusing a young girl more than 9 years ago. Alejandro Gutierrez is in the Cache County Jail after being arrested in March.
Gutierrez was in 1st District Court for a hearing Monday afternoon, appearing by video from jail. He was previously charged with five counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child and one count of sodomy on a child, all first-degree felonies.
Public defender Shannon Demler explained that he had met with Gutierrez to discuss the case and request the preliminary hearing, where a judge will determine if prosecutors have sufficient evidence to bind the defendant over for trial. He said they realized that the hearing would be postponed for several months because of health concerns with the COVID-19 pandemic, and they were willing to waive their right to a speedy trial.
According to Logan City police, Gutierrez had a warrant out for his arrest after he fled the area nine years ago. He was picked up by US Marshals in Mexico last month and transferred back to the state.
According to the warrant, Gutierrez is suspected of molesting the then 13-year-old girl multiple times over the period of several years. The last time was at her home, when he allegedly climbed into her bed and sexually assaulted her.
Police report, the girl woke up her siblings, who then reported the incident to the children’s mother. They confronted Gutierrez, who claimed he was drunk and asleep at the time. He left the home before officers arrived and hadn’t been seen since.
In April 2011, a judge issued the no bail arrest warrant for Gutierrez after his car was found at the Salt Lake International Airport. At that time, police had suspected that he had fled the country, traveling back to Mexico.
During Monday’s court appearance, Judge Brian Cannell scheduled Gutierrez’s preliminary hearing for June 16.
Gutierrez is being held in jail without bail. He could face up to life in prison if convicted.