ELYRIA — A deputy clerk of courts pleaded guilty Monday to gross sexual imposition for molesting an underage girl beginning when she was 8 in 1983.
Additional rape and sexual battery charges against William Tyrone Montgomery, 52, were dropped as part of the plea deal.
Montgomery could receive prison when he is sentenced later this year, although Lorain County Common Pleas Judge Mark Betleski didn’t indicate the penalty he would ultimately hand down. The judge did say that Montgomery will have to register as a sexually-oriented offender for 10 years.
County Clerk of Courts Ron Nabakowski was in Betleski’s courtroom for part of the hearing and said afterward that he has not yet made a decision on whether Montgomery will continue to work in his office. Montgomery mostly works on computer systems in the clerk’s office and has only limited interaction with the public.
According to court documents detailing the allegations against Montgomery, he began having sexual relations with the girl while he was babysitting her in her family’s Lorain home. He also had her perform oral sex on him while he was driving and she was a passenger in his vehicle.
The sexual molestation continued for years, according to court documents, with Montgomery sodomizing the girl and continuing to engage in oral sex with her even after her family moved to Elyria.
The victim, now an adult, contacted Elyria police years after the sexual abuse stopped, which led to the investigation that resulted in Montgomery being charged.
Earlier in the case, Jack Bradley, Montgomery’s defense attorney, had asked Betleski to throw out the charges against his client, arguing that the statute of limitations had expired.
Under state law, charges can be brought against those accused of molesting underage children for 20 years after the person reaches the “age of majority.”
Bradley had suggested that the victim reached that age when she turned 16, but Assistant County Prosecutor Chris Pierre had countered that the children become adults when they turn 18, which the girl did in August 1993.
Montgomery was indicted just weeks before the statute of limitations would have expired last year.
Bradley declined to comment after Monday’s hearing.