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Pagosan sentenced for sexual assault on a child

On Jan. 19, District Court Judge Gregory Lyman sentenced James Clay Fultz, 47, of Pagosa Springs to two years in jail followed by supervised probation for a minimum of 10 years up to his natural life and lifetime sex offender probation and registration, following Fultz’s conviction on charges related to sexual assaults on children.

Fultz entered a guilty plea Nov. 17, 2009, to a class four felony of unlawful sexual assault with a child and a class one misdemeanor of sexual contact.

The two-year jail sentence is the maximum allowed on the misdemeanor charge.

Fultz was originally charged on Oct. 1, 2008, with one count of sexual assault on a child; one count of sexual assault on a child, position of trust, pattern of abuse; and two counts of sexual assault on a child, pattern of abuse. There were three victims, said Deputy District Attorney Alex Lowe.

Fultz was arrested Sept. 19, 2008, following a complaint earlier that month of a possible sexual assault on a 6-year-old girl that was passed on to the Archuleta County Sheriff’s Department by another jurisdiction.

The allegation was that Fultz had shown the girl pornographic pictures on a cell phone, said Det. Rich Valdez of the Archuleta County Sheriff’s Department.

When Valdez began investigating, he discovered another report dating back to March 2002 in which Fultz had been accused of sexual assault, but no charges had been filed.

Valdez believed there was enough to file charges based on that report and, when interviewing the victim, also a juvenile, was told about another possible victim.

“Then I went and tracked down that one and found out that there was another victim of sexual assault, then they in return gave me names of one more possible victim. Then I spoke with that one and they gave me another one,” Valdez said.

In total, Valdez’s investigation spanned Colorado, Texas, Louisiana and Oklahoma and found five possible victims. The incidents ranged from the cell phone pictures to sexual contact, to forced sex.

The victims were 6-15 years old at the time of the incidents, which took place over a 20 to 25-year span, Valdez reported.

Three of the incidents took place in Archuleta County, while the two others took place in Louisiana and Oklahoma.

“The information that we have will be passed on to their jurisdictions to determine as to whether or not they feel they want to pursue charges against him in another state,” Valdez said.

randi@pagosasun.com