MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A 47-year-old man is accused of sexually assaulting a 4-year-old girl at his Burnsville residence last year, and the man in question is a family friend of the victim, according to the Dakota County Attorney’s Office.
Manuel Garcia Martinez was charged with one felony count of first-degree criminal sexual conduct with a victim under 13 in connection with the incident, which happened between July and October of 2013.
According to the charges, Burnsville Police received a report on Aug. 1, 2014, that a 4-year-old girl was sexually assaulted by a family friend that she attended church with. The suspect was later identified as Martinez and the alleged sexual assaults occurred at his residence on the 1400 block of Burnsville Parkway West.
The complaint states police spoke with the victim’s mother. The victim told her on Aug. 1 that Martinez touched her inappropriately last year. The mother told police that Martinez and his wife would watch the girl while she was at work. The victim told her mother that both her front and back had his private parts rubbed against his.
Martinez told the girl that “If it tickled,” she needed to “be quiet, it will be our little secret.”
The girl attended the same church as Martinez, and the victim’s mother contacted the pastor’s wife about the incident. The victim’s mother then said she got a call from Martinez’s wife, who was crying and upset. Martinez also got on the phone, denied all of the accusations and told the girl’s mother not to call police, the complaint states.
When interviewed by police, the girl said Martinez would touch her inappropriately while his wife was in the shower. It happened on several occasions while her mother was at work, Martinez’s wife was in the shower and their son was at school.
The girl said Martinez would perform various acts of criminal sexual conduct, and he would pull his pants up if his wife was coming out of the shower or would “hurry up” if he saw a door open.
Martinez told police he babysat the girl with his wife two to three days per week last year for a little more than a month. He denied being alone with the girl. His wife also said he was never alone with the girl, according to the charges.
If convicted, Martinez faces up to 30 years in prison and a $40,000 fine.