A man accused of forcing a boy in his care to engage in sexual activity with him — including once in a Walmart restroom — pleaded not guilty to criminal charges Monday at his arraignment in 5th Judicial District Court.
Brandon Waters, 30, of Roswell, entered a plea of not guilty on two counts of criminal sexual penetration in the first degree of a child under age 13.
District Judge Thomas Lilley, at the hearing, said Waters’ jury trial is scheduled for Feb. 4 at 9 a.m.
An affidavit states accusations against Waters came to the attention of police after it was reported that he had allegedly forced the 12-year-old boy to engage in sexual acts with him.
The boy, when questioned, told police that Waters would take him into the bathroom and perform sexual acts on him when his mother was asleep or not home. The affidavit states the incidents happened “11 or 12 times,” including once in a men’s room stall at the Walmart Supercenter at 4500 N. Main St.
A motion for pre-trial detention was submitted by the Chaves County District Attorney’s Office in July that would have prevented Waters from being released with or without bail pending trial.
District Judge Dustin Hunter though rejected the motion at a pretrial detention hearing in July. In explaining his decision, Hunter said the state did not meet the threshold in providing clear and convincing evidence that no reasonable steps could be taken to keep the victim and other people safe from Waters.
He imposed several conditions Waters must abide by if out on release. Waters must abide by a 7 p.m. curfew, is forbidden from having contact with anyone under the age of 18, and must abstain from owning any firearms or consuming drugs or alcohol during the investigation.
According to a Chaves County Detention Center jail release report, Waters was released July 11.
Breaking news reporter Alex Ross can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 301, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.