NORRISTOWN — Charges against a local man for alleged sex crimes against children were held for trial during the defendant’s preliminary hearing before a district court judge Tuesday morning.
Sean Rahatt, 41, of the 1400 block of Markley Street, Norristown, is charged with forcing sex acts on two girls between 1998 and 2005. He is free after a family member posted $99,000 cash bail following his arrest on April 19.
In court Tuesday morning, Rahatt appeared well-dressed and clean-shaven, and said little before District Judge Margaret Hunsicker. He was accompanied by his attorney, John W. Aitchison.
Rahatt was originally charged with 115 counts, but Assistant District Attorney Kristen Feden said they were reduced to 75 and are “more tailored for his offense(s).”
He is charged with sexual assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse with a child, aggravated indecent assault, aggravated indecent assault of a child, indecent exposure, endangering the welfare of a child and corruption of minors.
“The veracity of the charges will come out in the process. That’s what the trial is for,” said Aitchison.
“For today’s purposes, the Commonwealth agreed that some of these charges should never have been filed in the first place, even at this preliminary level. So, we have a little bit more time to investigate what really happened, and I bet we’ll see the same thing with a lot more of (the charges).”
Prosecutors said the victims – now ages 12 and 19 – have been very cooperative with investigators.
“They have a great support system,” said Feden, adding that the reason the girls are coming forth now is because, “it’s the realization of trying to move forward in their own minds and reach closure.”
According to a criminal complaint, the assaults occurred at various locations in Norristown, Lansdale and Collegeville. One victim was reportedly as young as five years old.
The victims told police Rahatt told them that he “was abused prior and that his affections were reenacting his past.”
“During the conversation, Sean Rahatt referred to what was done between them (something) that occurred in Roman families and was done to keep the power in the family. Sean Rahatt stated that there was a whole world out there (which) has made this OK, but if it makes you feel like you feel now, then it is obviously not,” the affidavit reads.
On April 16, the Ambler Police Department received a report of suspected child abuse, in reference to an indecent assault on a young female. She was reportedly under the age of 12 at the time.
The second victim reportedly told police that Rahatt had sexually assaulted her in his Markley Street home in the summer of 2010.
Rahatt is free on bail, with the condition he have no contact with any of his victims, even via a third party. A formal arraignment has been scheduled for June 19 at Montgomery County Courthouse.
Follow Jenny DeHuff on Twitter @RuffTuffDH.
(Story is from www.timesherald.com)