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PROVO — A jury found an American Fork man guilty of sexually abusing a 4-year-old girl following a four-day trial last week, officials said.
Royce Brandon Schaefer, 33, was convicted of aggravated sexual abuse of a child and sodomy on a child, both first-degree felonies, in 4th District Court on May 15, according to a news release from the Utah County Attorney’s Office.
Schaefer faces a minimum sentence of 25 years to life at the Utah State Prison, the release stated.
On June 4, 2016, Schaefer approached the girl on a sidewalk outside the Maple Village Apartments, 485 E. 500 South, in American Fork. After a brief visit with the girl, Schaefer, who was a stranger to her, kissed her on forehead, cheek and lips before picking her up and performing sexual acts on her, officials said in the news release.
Schaefer fled the scene and was later contacted by police who identified him as a suspect in the case. While authorities waited for his DNA test results, Schaefer moved to Ohio, officials said.
Schaefer was charged with the crime on Oct. 10 in 4th District Court and was arrested in Ohio two weeks later.
During the trial, another young girl testified about a sexual encounter with Schaefer that happened in Colorado, the news release stated.
Schaefer is scheduled to be sentenced on July 11.