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James David Jaure

James David Jaure

CASPER, Wyo. — A former church janitor could spend nearly 20 years in jail after his second sex crime conviction in a decade.

James David Jaure is accused of multiple acts of molestation on young girls — some under 13 — while he was employed at Highland Park Church in Casper. Police allege Jaure allowed church members to believe he was a youth leader, which gained him access to the girls.

Jaure, 29, is listed under Wyoming’s Sex Offender Registry, but it is unclear by the police affidavit whether church employers were aware of this upon hiring him. According to the website, he was convicted on April 2, 2004 in Cheyenne for third-degree sexual assault.

Officials at the church were unavailable for comment late Thursday afternoon, and a witness listed in the affidavit declined to speak about the case.

James David Jaure — who also used the aliases James Juare and James Hursh — wept in court Thursday morning as attorneys outlined his plea agreement.

In exchange for his guilty plea, Juare’s three sentences will run concurrent to one another and two original charges will be dismissed.

His years behind bars, though, are still nearly as high as the maximum number allowed by Wyoming statute.

Jaure pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree sexual abuse of a minor and two counts of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor. The charges carry maximum penalties of 15 and 20 years in prison respectively. Jaure’s plea deal stipulates that he will spend 13 to 15 years in prison for the third-degree count and 16 to 19 years for each of the second-degree charges.

To establish a factual basis for the guilty pleas, Natrona County District Judge Catherine Wilking asked Jaure for specifics on each of the three charges.

Jaure admitted that he touched two of the girls’ genitals over their clothes and that he received oral sex from another.

Hushed crying could be heard from the spectator’s gallery as the defendant detailed his crimes.

Jaure is currently held at the Natrona County Detention Center in lieu of a $100,000 bond. He will be officially sentenced at a later date.

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