By Shereen Siewert

A 28-year-old Wausau man accused of assaulting a 7-year-old girl and offering her $25 to keep quiet is being held on a $20,000 cash bond, after an initial appearance this week in Marathon County Circuit Court.

Matthew J. Weiler faces charges of first-degree sexual assault of a child younger than 12 and child enticement. The charges were filed Monday, Aug. 2.

Police and prosecutors say the assault happened in September 2013 and came to light when the alleged victim, now 14, disclosed the abuse to a friend and later to her parents.

The girl, who is not related to Weiler and no longer lives in Wausau, said she was assaulted while she and her siblings were spending the night at a friend’s house during a power outage at her own home.

After the assault, Weiler allegedly tried to persuade the girl that “what had happened was okay” and offered her cash “not to say anything,” according to the criminal complaint. The girl did not take the money, police said.

During a hearing Tuesday Circuit Judge Greg Huber set the cash bond for Weiler and ordered him not to have any contact with the girl or her family. A preliminary hearing is set for Sept. 11.

Weiler faces up to 85 years in the Wisconsin State Prison system if he is convicted on both counts. He remains behind bars as of Tuesday.