A judge agreed Wednesday to reduce the bond of a man accused of molesting three young girls but prohibited the truck driver from leaving the state.

Prosecutors have filed three counts of aggravated indecent liberties against Donald Adams, 67, Hutchinson, and Reno County District Attorney Keith Schroeder told the court Wednesday additional charges would likely be filed after testimony at Adam’s preliminary hearing. Each count carries mandatory life imprisonment.

The complaint against him alleges Adams inappropriately touched the three girls, aged 5 to 11, between June 2008 and December 2009 at a Hutchinson home.

Adams was arrested last week in Salina on a warrant out of Reno County and is being held on $150,000 bond.

His attorney, Michelle Moe, asked District Judge Randall McEwen to set an own recognizance bond or, if a surety bond was required, that it be set at $20,000, which could be secured with his home mortgage.

Adams is not a flight risk, Moe argued, noting she called him in California and told him to return to Kansas because she anticipated charges were going to be filed. She said he was en route to Topeka to take a polygraph exam at the time he was arrested.

Schroeder told the court, however, that he received word from Adams’ employer that Adams had called them and said he was “abandoning his load in Salina and to come get it,’ indicating he was out of there.”

Other grounds his attorney presented for Adams’ release were his substantial family ties in Reno County, his need to remain employed and multiple medical conditions the county would be financially liable for as long as he remains jailed.

Adams and his wife have lived in Hutchinson the past seven years and he’s lived here on and off throughout his life, Moe said. He has two sisters who live in Hutchinson and two brothers in Sterling. Also in court on his behalf Wednesday, the attorney noted, was his pastor.

Adams health issues include Graves’ disease, a thyroid illness, and several previous heart surgeries.

Adams’ only prior criminal history, according to his attorney, was a misdemeanor check conviction in 1983.

“We’ve filed three counts of aggravated indecent liberties and each carries life,” Schroeder said. “I anticipate that will go up dramatically after the preliminary hearing, as each victim has described multiple events. I can’t talk about the facts anymore than that. … But each count carries the same sentence as first-degree murder. He is an over-the-road truck driver who travels all over the U.S. He’s age 67, so life in prison is life in prison.”

The judge reduced the bond from $150,000 to $25,000 with surety, ordered that Adams remain under bond supervision if he is able to post bond and prohibited him from leaving the state.

“The court is concerned with a crime of this nature that the risk to the community is high,” McEwen said. “But the defendant has many factors in his favor.”

The case was transferred to the Division 3 court for its April 21 preliminary hearing waiver docket.


by John Green

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