LOGAN — The sentencing for a 19-year-old Millville man convicted of molesting a 7-year-old girl has been postponed while attorneys work out a plea deal in a second case. Joshua A. Powell was arrested in February after the victim reported being sexually abused.
Court records show, Powell was scheduled to be sentenced in 1st District Court Tuesday. The hearing was postponed though so attorneys could have time to work out a plea agreement in the other case.
In April, Powell admitted to molesting the young girl while at her home during a February party. He had walked into the victim’s bedroom while she was in bed, and asked to give her a hug. He then began inappropriately touching her, while kissing and licking her face.
As part of the original plea agreement, Powell pleaded guilty to one count of sex abuse of a child, a second-degree felony. Prosecutors dropped two remaining charges, and agreed to recommend the court sentence the defendant to jail and probation instead of prison.
Later, during a presentence investigation, prosecutors learned that Powell allegedly sexually abused the same girl 10-30 times during the past year. The victim told her mother how he had inappropriately touched her and licked her multiple times between Apr. 2019 and Jan. 2020.
Deputies questioned Powell in jail about the new allegations. During the course of the interview, he said he had known the victim for the last two years but didn’t start molesting her until the past year. He stated that he would inappropriately touch her 85 percent of the time that he would hug her. He admitted to seeing her 3-4 times a week and would usually hug her every time he saw her.
Prosecutors filed the second case against Powell. It included 10 new charges of sex abuse of a child, a second-degree felony.
During Tuesday’s hearing, Judge Thomas Willmore granted attorneys more time to work out a new agreement. He scheduled a change of plea hearing for July 9.
Powell remains in jail. He could face up to 15 years in prison from the new charges.