A Menan man was arrested Friday after he allegedly admitted to sexually abusing a woman with the mental capabilities of a 5-year-old, authorities said.
Terry Ricks, 57, told police he had sexually abused the victim multiple times between Halloween and April.
An investigation began after a caretaker at a group home for adults where the victim lives noticed she was behaving oddly. The victim told the caretaker Ricks had inappropriately touched her multiple times. The caretaker had seen Ricks visiting the home frequently.
The victim said the most recent incident happened when she was visiting family outside the care center. Ricks reportedly asked her to have sex with her and she refused. She said Ricks inappropriately touched after she said no. She said Ricks told her to keep what happened a secret.
An officer contacted Ricks, and he agreed to an interview. He denied touching the victim or sexually abusing her, telling police they had only watched movies. When asked about kissing her, Ricks said, “If I did it, I wouldn’t remember.” Ricks agreed to undergo a polygraph examination.
A week after the interview, Ricks contacted police and admitted to the sexual abuse. He said it was consensual. The officer asked Ricks about the victim’s mental disability, and he downplayed it, citing her age and describing himself as a boyfriend. Ricks said he never had sex with the victim.
Police spoke to the victim’s caretaker to confirm her mental disability classified her as a vulnerable adult. Because of her disability, the victim could not legally consent to sexual acts.
Ricks was charged with sexually abusing a vulnerable adult, punishable with up to 25 years in prison. His bond was set at $40,000. A no-contact order was issued between him and the victim.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 1:30 p.m. June 21 in the Bonneville County Courthouse.