Bellmead man charged in child sex abuse case offered plea deal after accuser changed story
Prosecutors recommend deferred probation after man pleaded guilty to lesser charge
WACO, Texas (KWTX) - A Bellmead man facing a potential life sentence with no possibility for parole pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a young family member Friday after prosecutors reduced the charge and recommended he be placed on deferred probation.
Ivan Segura, 31, a packaging supply company employee, pleaded guilty to indecency with a child by contact, a second-degree felony punishable by up to 20 years in prison.
Segura was indicted for continuous sexual abuse of a child, a first-degree felony that carries a minimum punishment of 25 years in prison without parole. However, the McLennan County District Attorney’s Office reduced that charge and recommended that 19th State District Judge Thomas West place Segura on deferred probation.
The judge ordered a presentence report by probation officers, which he will review before sentencing Segura on Dec. 1.
Segura’s attorney, Phil Martinez, said the DA’s office agreed to reduce the charge and offer deferred probation after a prosecutor interviewed the abused girl on Aug. 25 and reported that some of her statements about the allegations differed from her original outcry.
Prosecutors have a duty to inform the defense of any potentially exculpatory evidence of which they are aware.
Martinez said Segura talked the plea offer over with his family and decided to accept it rather than risk a possible lengthy prison term.
According to an arrest affidavit, the girl, who was 7 at the time, reported that Segura, a family member, touched her inappropriately while she was in the shower in January 2018. The girl’s mother told authorities that the girl had been showering on her own for quite some time.
Bellmead police interviewed Segura twice, reporting in the affidavit that he denied having any contact with the child in the shower. In a subsequent interview, Segura admitted he lied and told police he washed the child’s vaginal and buttocks areas.
Segura and another defendant pleaded guilty simultaneously in court Friday. The second defendant, initially charged with third-degree felony evading arrest in a vehicle, pleaded guilty to a Class B misdemeanor for an offer of 90 days in the county jail.
The reduced plea offers prompted Judge West to comment, “It seems both attorneys should be arrested for theft.”
In deferred probation cases, there is no final judgment of guilt if defendants complete the terms and conditions of probation.
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