Preliminary hearing postponed for Idaho man suspected of sexting and sexually abusing two girls

Booking photo for Kyle E. Joe (Courtesy: Cache County Jail)

LOGAN — The preliminary hearing for a 19-year-old Idaho man, suspected of sexually abusing a young child and sexting with a teenage girl, has been postponed again. It was delayed a second time as attorneys continue to determine when the crimes were allegedly committed by Kyle E. Joe, and whether he was an adult at the time.

The hearing for Joe was supposed to take place Tuesday afternoon in 1st District Court. He has been charged with ten counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, a first-degree felony; ten counts of sexual exploitation of a minor, a second-degree felony; and six counts of dealing in materials harmful to a minor, a third-degree felony.

Defense attorney Wayne Caldwell said he and prosecutors were still trying to determine when the alleged crimes occurred. He explained that new evidence had just been received, showing that four of the incidents took place when Joe was a teenager.

Cache County Deputy Attorney Dane Murray agreed with Caldwell and requested four of the sexual abuse charges be dismissed. He said the attorney’s office will refile the charges in juvenile court, since Joe was believed to be a minor at the time.

Cache County Sheriff’s deputies began investigating Joe after a teenage girl claimed she had exchanged pornographic photographs with the suspect. The defendant was allegedly an acquaintance of the victim.

When deputies interviewed Joe, he admitted to sexting with the underage girl in 2017 and allowed them to view his cellphone. He also confessed to sexually abusing a 5-year-old girl around the same time.

During Tuesday’s court appearance, Judge Thomas Willmore ordered Joe to appear again July 22.

Joe remains in the Cache County Jail on $330,000 bail. He could face up to life in prison if convicted.

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