Accused child molester in custody, bond set at $99,000

 Damian Richards

Damian Richards

A warrant was issued late Friday for the arrest of a 26-year-old man accused of a child molestation that allegedly occurred last month in Linton. He was arrested over the weekend in another county, transferred and is now in custody at the Greene County Jail where his bond is set at $99,000.

Damian Richards, 26, was living in Linton when the alleged incident occurred. Court records at the time the warrant was issued on Friday listed him with a Bloomfield address. Court records following his arrest now list him with a home address in Terre Haute.

Richards appeared in Greene Circuit Court early Monday morning and was charged with:

  • Two counts of child molesting, where the defendant is at least 21 years of age, both Level 1 felonies
  • Child molesting involving fondling or touching with a child under the age of 14, a Level 4 felony
  • Performing sexual conduct in the presence of a minor involving touching or fondling oneself, a Level 6 felony

A Level 1 felony is the most serious felony under Indiana law which classifies felony crimes from Level 1 through Level 6 which is the least serious.

During his initial hearing, Greene County Deputy Public Defender Ellen Martin was appointed to represent him, he was served with a protective order, and upcoming hearing dates were set including trial by jury in December.

Damian Richards has been under investigation by Indiana State Police Master Trooper and Detective Stacy Brown. When the case was filed against Richards last Friday afternoon in Greene Circuit Court, the warrant for his arrest was promptly ordered by Judge Erik Allen.

At that time, Judge Allen also specified the amount of bond for Richards to be $99,000 surety with ten percent cash allowed. It would take $9,900 cash for Richards to be released.

The investigation started on Thursday, June 14, when ISP Trooper Wyatt Phillips was requested to assist with a report involving a very young victim who had been interviewed by a caseworker at Susie’s Place in Bloomington.

According to information included in a probable cause document prepared by Det. Brown, during this forensic interview, which was videotaped, the child, though young, was able to explain and describe in detail the conversation and what happened during the alleged incident.

Also on June 14, the victim had a sexual assault examination completed at the Center for Hope at Riley Children’s Hospital in Indianapolis after the alleged molestation occurred the evening of Tuesday, June 12, at a residence in Linton.

On June 15, Det. Brown interviewed both the mother of the victim and Richards. Brown said Richards told him none of the allegations were true and he thought the child had been coached.

However, Det. Brown wrote that he doubted this explanation that the child had been coached, due to the details and graphic nature of the information the child was able to provide.

Then Richards allegedly changed his story on June 20 when he was interviewed by ISP Sgt. John Campbell. During this interview, Richards allegedly confessed to sexually abusing the child, confirmed the time and place it happened was the same as the information given by the victim, and he allegedly confessed to the details, confirming the details of the incident that were provided by the victim.

[Editor’s Note: To establish probable cause to the court, Det. Brown included details of the incident as obtained in interviews and the investigation, but the age and sex of the alleged victim and additional details of the incident will not be included in this story or future stories about this case on this site.]