Charges dismissed after accused sex offender dies in jail

Charges dismissed after accused sex offender dies in jail

(Utah County Sheriff's Office)

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UTAH STATE PRISON — The case against a Springville man accused of forcing at least three teenage girls to perform sex acts is now closed after the 68-year-old man died of a stroke.

Kenneth Michael Bond was in prison on an unrelated weapons conviction and awaiting a competency hearing for the 38 felony charges filed against him last spring when he suffered a stroke, Utah Department of Corrections spokesman Steve Gehrke confirmed. Bond was taken to an area hospital, where he died Jan. 4.

Bond was accused of coercing two teenage girls into engaging in non-consensual sex acts with him and at least three other men and threatened a third girl into complying with sexual demands.

Prosecutor Craig Johnson, who had been preparing for Tuesday's hearing, instead filed a motion in 4th District Court to dismiss the charges Monday. Bond's death certificate was attached.

"When cases drag on and on and on over months and years, these victims relive the very abuse they suffered," said Johnson, who spoke to two of the three women Monday. "For that I'm grateful, that I don't have to keep hauling them into court to relive these events."

Bond allegedly met two of the victims — a 15-year-old and a 16-year-old — and would take them to his home while they were supposed to be attending an alternative high school. Between January and July 2011, he is accused of using gifts, coercion and threats to make the girls perform sex acts with him or other men while he watched from another room.

In 2008, Bond allegedly threatened and forced a 17-year-old girl to engage in sex acts with him.

He faced a total of 38 felonies, including object rape and aggravated sexual assault, first-degree felonies; aggravated exploitation of a prostitute, a second-degree felony; and unlawful sexual activity with a minor, a third-degree felony.

Bond was in prison on a one- to 15-year sentence for carrying a concealed dangerous weapon, a second-degree felony, in an unrelated case.

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