A status hearing in Yuma County Superior Court on Friday for a man who was arrested with his father for allegedly sexually abusing a young girl when she was between 9 and 12 years old, was continued until next month in order to give his attorney more time to continue reviewing all the material in the case.
Yuma attorney Marlo Arnold, who represents Paz Poore Vega, informed the court that a substitution of council motion had been filed on Thursday and she was taking over her client’s case from his previous attorney, but had not had an opportunity yet to familiarize herself with the case.
When asked if the state had any objections to granting a continuance in the matter, prosecutor James Eustace, of the Yuma County Attorney’s Office, said he did not have a position on it. He did, however, inform the court he planned on filing a motion to have the case designated a complex case.
Eustace explained to the court that due to the nature of the charges, that out-of-state witness and forensics will be involved, more time will be needed. He also said his office planned to ask the court to designate the case against Vega’s father as a complex case as well.
A complex case designation adds 90 to 120 days (depending on if the defendant is in custody or out of custody) to the total maximum amount of time that the prosecutor has to bring the case to trial.
Normally the prosecution has 150 days from the time of the arraignment to take a case to trial. A complex case designation, however, extends that time to 270 days.
After hearing from both sides, Superior Court Judge Nelson, who is presiding over the case, rescheduled it for 8:30 a.m. Nov. 15. Vega has been charged with two counts of molestation of a child, two counts of sexual abuse and four counts of sexual conduct with a minor.
In providing the court with some initial facts of the case at a previous hearing, Eustace said the son, during a conversation with the victim, who is now 18, admitted to at least one incident where he allegedly sexually assaulted her.
The father, according to Eustace, also admitted to sexually assaulting the victim in a conversation with the victim.
James Gilbert can be reached at email@example.com or 539-6854. Find him on Facebook at www.Facebook.com/YSJamesGilbert or on Twitter @YSJamesGilbert.