Local News

Former student to serve 12 years for molesting a child on bus

A former Sitka High School student will spend twelve years in prison for molesting a six-year-old child on a school bus.

Twenty-year old Alexander Evans received six-year sentences for each of two counts of Sexual Abuse of a Minor.

Note: A word of caution to parents, some details in this story may be inappropriate for younger readers.

According to court records Evans was a high school student who rode an early bus to school in the mornings in the fall of 2011.

The charges stem from incidents which occurred from mid-November 2011 — about a month after Evans turned 18 — through February 2012, when the child’s father took her to SEARHC Hospital and police began an investigation.

Based on the child’s testimony and the defendant’s own admission, Evans was initially charged with five counts of Sexual Abuse of a Minor, for acts ranging from touching the child’s breasts and buttocks, to having sexual contact with her with his finger.

All are Class B felonies under Alaska law.

According to assistant district attorney Jean Seaton, the Alaska Legislature has tightened penalties for some sex offenses since these crimes took place. She says that the 12 years Evans will serve under his plea agreement is likely more time than he would have received if he had been convicted at trial.

Sitka’s school bus policy has not changed as a result of the incident, though supervision has tightened. Superintendent Steve Bradshaw says that district rules, then as now, don’t allow elementary school children to ride with students in grade six or higher. Exceptions can be made, but the older student is supposed to sit apart from the younger children, up front, near the bus driver. He says the rules simply weren’t followed when the abuse occurred.

Bradshaw says that any older student who rides an elementary school bus now must be preapproved by him personally.

Although this sentencing concludes the criminal aspect of the case, Bradshaw was hesitant to comment further, since civil litigation may still be possible.

In addition to serving 12 years, Evans will be on probation for 10 years following his release, when he is approximately 32 years old.

Comments

Please read our comment guidelines.

Recent News

Botanists look to fern for clues to Southeast’s past

Brad Krieckhaus, botanist at the Sitka Ranger District, made the first modern find of the fern on the southwest side of Baranof Island in Summer 2005.
A species of fern common in Asia has been found in Southeast Alaska. But unlike invasive species, Wright’s filmy fern is an early colonizer. And figuring out how and when it got here is the next piece of the puzzle. more

Rob Harcourt: Where the wild things swim

Rob_Harcourt
Rob Harcourt is a professor of Marine Ecology at Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia. He's in Sitka as a Scientist in Residency Fellow (SIRF) at the Sitka Sound Science Center. Harcourt uses advanced tagging techniques to study ocean animals and their habitat -- everything from jellyfish to blue whales. He'll be speaking tonight (6PM Wed Apr 22, Alaska Raptor Rehabilitation Center, free) on climate change and penquins: "Will Happy Feet feel the heat?" With SSS research director Tory O'Connell. Downloadable audio. more