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Convicted groper gets year in slammer

A judge sentenced a man to a year in the county jail last week, saying she was appalled by his workplace behavior.

Alexander Delgado, 50, appeared in District Court Jan. 31 to be sentenced on a gross misdemeanor charge of conspiracy to commit battery. He was originally charged with open and gross lewdness, which was then pleaded down to the conspiracy charge, following an incident in his counseling office where he reportedly made unwanted sexual advances toward a female in a filing room.

“He made unwanted advances and started kissing and groping this lady and it took multiple times of her saying ‘no, stop it’ for him to get the hint and lay off,” Deputy District Attorney Michael Vieta-Kabell told the court.

Despite the seriousness of the allegations, Delgado’s attorney Jonathan Nelson asked for one year of probation in the case.

“Mr. Delgado, as you can see from the pre-sentence investigation report, has no previous criminal background and he’s gainfully employed,” Nelson said. “He’s never been before the court prior to this incident, so we would submit that, with the exception of three year term of probation, we would submit to parole and probation’s (sentencing) recommendation. We would only ask that probation be only one year.”

Vieta-Kabell said although the case had been pleaded down, he would ask Delgado be given at least one month in jail as well as three year’s probation.

“Mr. Delgado, even though he plead to a charge that carries the same exposure, got a great deal in this case. Under the original charge of open or gross lewdness, he would have had to register as a sex offender and he avoids that now. But, I want there to be a lasting effect, I don’t want this to be something he can forget about down the road,” he said.

Although both the prosecution and defense were recommending Delgado be given probation, Judge Kimberly Wanker said she didn’t feel this was a probational offense.

“You know what appalled me the most was your victim statement. You blamed the victim. You told parole and probation this wasn’t your fault. You have steadfastly said you’ve been set up. You refuse to accept responsibility for this,” she said. “What also troubles me is you have a counseling service. So you had counseling clients who came in and is that what you do? You prey on people? You have a counseling service and that’s all you could write about is how your counseling service was stolen from you.

“Do you think that’s appropriate? People go to a counseling service to get help, not to be groped. You don’t think this is very serious, but I think this conduct is absolutely outrageous. I don’t care if it was a male on female or a female on male, this kind of conduct is absolutely outrageous and I won’t tolerate it.”

Wanker then sentenced Delgado to 364 days in the Nye County Detention Center.

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