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Testimony begins in Rumford sexual assault trial
PARIS — A long-delayed trial began Monday for a man accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a girl over a period of more than five years.
James V. Cole Jr., 32, of Rumford faces 11 charges of gross sexual assault. The alleged victim, now an adult, was 10 years old when the alleged assaults began.
The assaults were alleged to have happened in Rumford and Mexico between 2003 and 2008. According to the alleged victim, Cole assaulted her about 50 times, but she testified to police only on the occasions she remembered in detail.
In his opening remarks Monday, Assistant District Attorney Richard Beauchesne told jurors they would hear witness testimony and learn of DNA evidence from items used in the last alleged assault.
“I doubt we'll see a 'gotcha' CSI moment,” Beauchesne told jurors, referring to the police procedural TV show short for “Crime Scene Investigation.”
“That really does only happen on TV,” he said.
Cole's defense attorney, Leonard Sharon, said the accusation was another event in his client's hard life including a series of dead-end jobs, an ex-wife who suffered kidney failure, seeing his home foreclosed upon and an attempt to take his own life.
He said the victim's claim came out of a grudge, and said the subsequent investigation by the Rumford Police Department was sloppy, accusing the police of conducting an investigation “contrary to everything they'd been taught.”
If convicted, the sentence could put Cole in jail for the rest of his life.