Man accused of repeated assault on child

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BENNINGTON — A former Bennington man is being held without bail after being accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a child.

Richard McLauchlan was arrested in Pennsylvania this week on an extraditable warrant, court records show.

The acts are alleged to have taken place in Bennington between 2015 and 2016 when the girl was five and six years-old.

McLauchlan, 31, pleaded not guilty in Bennington criminal court on Wednesday to felony repeated aggravated sexual assault, and aggravated sexual assault on a child under 13.

Judge David A. Howard held McLauchlan without bail pending a weight of evidence hearing, which could determine whether or not he will be released on bail pending the outcome of his case.

If convicted on the repeated assault charge, McLauchlan faces a minimum sentence of 25 years in prison.

In an affidavit, Detective Anthony Silvestro, of the Bennington Police Department, wrote that he was provided with a video recording of an interview between a seven-year-old girl and a child abuse investigator. The child, who was known to McLauchlan and now lives out-of-state, told a forensic investigator that McLauchlan had sexually assaulted her several times and that she did not feel safe near him.

The child described one incident in which McLauchlan took her to the doctors to be treated for her injuries, and he told doctors she had fallen over a fence. The child said McLauchan "was trying to trick the doctors," the affidavit states.

When interviewed by police on Nov. 28, McLauchlan denied any wrong-doing.

McLauchlan was living in Kennett Square, Penn., court records show. A warrant for McLauchlan's arrest was issued on Jan. 9 and executed on Tuesday.

McLauchlan does not have a criminal history in Vermont.

Ed Damon can be reached at edamon@benningtonbanner.com, at @edamon_banner on Twitter and 802-447-7567, ext. 111.


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