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Stevens Point man convicted in child sex trafficking case

in Sirens
Leo Pelot, of Stevens Point. Photo courtesy of the Lincoln County Sheriff’s Department

MERRILL — A 67-year-old Stevens Point man accused of trying to pay for sex with a 15-year-old girl was convicted Wednesday in Lincoln County Circuit Court of trafficking a child, avoiding a jury trial on multiple charges.

As part of a plea agreement, charges of attempted sexual assault of a child and child enticement filed March 22 against Leo Pelot were dismissed, but will be considered at sentencing.

Police say Pelot, using the name “John Crane,” arranged to meet a woman he thought was the aunt of the girl at a Merrill fast food restaurant and paid the woman $100 to have sex with the teen. But the “aunt” turned out to be an investigator, and Pelot was arrested and charged.

Pelot was released from jail April 23 after posting a $30,000 cash bond, court records show. Bond conditions require Pelot to adhere to a strict curfew from 9 p.m. to 6 a.m. and to surrender his passport and all electronic devices capable of accessing the internet.

A three-day jury trial that was to begin Nov. 19 is now off the calendar. Instead, Pelot will be sentenced in April 12 following a presentencing investigation.

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