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Jury Trial Set for Port Man Charged with Sexually Assaulting 5-Year-Old

James R. Esselman pleaded not guilty to two counts of first-degree sexual assault of a child under 12 years old and five counts of possession of child pornography. A jury trial is scheduled to start in November.

A Port Washington man charged with sexually assaulting a 5-year-old girl twice as well as taking pornographic photos of the victim is tentatively set for a jury trial in November.

James R. Esselman, 216 W. Jackson St., was charged in January with two counts of first-degree sexual assault of a child under 12 years old and five counts of possession of child pornography. A jury trial is now scheduled to start at 8:45 a.m. Nov. 15.

In March, he pleaded not guilty to the charges. On Sept. 12 he will appear in court at 11 a.m. for a status conference to discuss whether trial will go on. If convicted, he faces up to 245 years in prison and $500,000 in fines.

According to the criminal complaint, at his residence while babysitting the child. The incidents came to light on Jan. 21 after the victim told Esselman's mother they had played "boy butt and girl butt," and explained how the game made her cry. She then confronted her son about the allegation and Esselman admitted to it, but said he had only molested the girl once.

When police then interviewed Esselman, he admitted to sexually assaulting the girl twice and making the girl pose for sexually explicit photos.

Esselman is being held in county jail on $100,000 bond.

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