Preliminary hearing set for man accused of lewd acts with a child

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A preliminary hearing has been set for a Long Beach man charged with sexually assaulting a 5-year-old girl at a wedding reception in Valencia, the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Jeff Boulter, 39, faces one felony count each of kidnapping to commit oral copulation, kidnapping for child molesting, kidnapping a victim under age 14, lewd act upon a child, forcible lewd act upon a child and attempted forcible oral copulation of a victim under 14 years old, Deputy District Attorney Ani Bailey of the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office said in a prepared statement issued in June.

Boulter appeared in San Fernando Superior Court on Thursday, when he was ordered to return for a preliminary hearing Tuesday.

Deputies with the Santa Clarita Valley Sheriff’s Station arrested Boulter on May 20. During a preliminary hearing, prosecutors will present evidence in the case, and the defense can respond; the judge can then decide if the case should go to trial.

Boulter pleaded not guilty to the charges in June.

He allegedly dragged the victim to a dark corner May 19, the prosecutor’s statement said. A server at the wedding noticed the alleged assault and confronted the defendant, who then fled, the prosecutor added.

If convicted as charged, Boulter faces a possible maximum sentence of life in state prison. Bail is set at $1 million.

The case remains under investigation by the SCV Sheriff’s Station.

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