CRIME

Utah sex offender arrested, accused of sexually abusing teen co-worker

Nov 30, 2022, 4:36 PM
A convicted sex offender sentenced to federal prison just three years ago in a child pornography ca...
A convicted sex offender sentenced to federal prison just three years ago in a child pornography case has been arrested again and accused of sexually abusing a teenage co-worker. (Utah Department of Corrections)
(Utah Department of Corrections)

SALT LAKE CITY — A registered sex offender who was sentenced to federal prison three years ago has been arrested again and accused of sexually abusing a teenage girl just just one week after he was released from prison.

James Michael Rouse, 36, of Salt Lake City, was arrested Tuesday for investigation of three counts of forcible sexual abuse, two counts of forcible sodomy, object rape and enticing a minor.

A 17-year-old girl told police that she and Rouse were co-workers and that she would talk with him at work and give him rides to his home after work. The teen eventually told Rouse that “she had developed feelings for him” and admitted to kissing him at his house, according to a police booking affidavit.

On subsequent visits to his home in November, however, Rouse inappropriately touched the teen even though he “knew she was under 18 years old,” the affidavit states. Detectives questioned Rouse on Tuesday and placed him into custody at the end of their interview.

In December 2018, Rouse was charged in 2nd District Court with several courts of sexual exploitation of a minor accusing him of possessing child pornography at his home in Kaysville. The state charges were later dismissed in lieu of federal charges being filed.

In 2019, Rouse was convicted on a federal charge of possessing child pornography and in September of 2019 he was sentenced to more than five years in federal prison, according to court records, followed by 15 years of supervised release. But according to the Utah Sex Offender and Kidnap Registry, Rouse was released from prison on Nov. 21.

One of the conditions of his federal probation states that Rouse is “restricted from contact with individuals who are under 18 years of age without adult supervision, as approved by the U.S. Probation Office,” according to court records.

It was not immediately known why Rouse was out of prison at the time of Tuesday’s arrest.

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Utah sex offender arrested, accused of sexually abusing teen co-worker