- Associated Press - Friday, March 28, 2014

FARMINGTON, N.M. (AP) - Authorities said they had difficulty taking a child sex case to trial, resulting in a plea agreement for an 83-year-old Farmington man who is now out of jail after pleading guilty to three charges.

The Daily Times (https://bit.ly/1dzYX3P ) reports that Gerald Hale was sentenced to five years’ probation and released from jail March 21. He pleaded guilty to criminal sexual contact against a minor, child abuse and false imprisonment.

Hale was arrested in August 2012.

Prosecutor Dustin O’Brien says there were evidence problems that compromised the ability to take the case to trial.

Defense attorney Cosme Ripol says the deal will protect the victim from psychological and emotional stress of a trial.

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