METHUEN — A Methuen man accused in July of having sex with a child will remain in jail until a superior court judge decides whether the man poses a danger to the public.
John Lefebre, 63, of 23 Frye Road, was arrested July 12 and charged with six counts each of aggravated statutory rape and posing a child for sexual photos after police conducted a search of his property and found videos and images of the him having sex with a young girl.
Carrie Kimball-Monahan, a spokeswoman for Essex County District Attorney Jonathan Blodgett, said Lefebre appeared in Salem, Mass. Superior Court yesterday for a dangerousness hearing. Superior Court Judge Timothy Feeley will decide on Lefebre’s status by Wednesday, Kimball-Monahan said.
Lefebre is being held in the Essex County Sheriff’s Department jail in Middleton, and has been in custody since his arrest July 12. He was arrested and arraigned in Lawrence District Court last month, but because of the charges, his case was transferred to superior court. His next court date is a pretrial conference scheduled for Oct. 18.
Police said that Lefebre has been abusing the girl, now 10, for four years.
Capt. Kris McCarthy, who headed the investigation, told The Eagle-Tribune in July that police are not ruling out the possibility of additional victims, as well as additional suspects. He said yesterday that State Police computer forensic specialists are still reviewing data on the computers and hard drives seized from Lefebre’s property to determine whether there are other victims.
Methuen police also is working with police in the girl’s hometown in New Hampshire and with New Hampshire state police.
The girl’s parents took her to speak with a therapist in New Hampshire after she became distant and withdrawn. On July 10, the girl told the therapist about the abuse, saying Lefebre made her sit with him and watch pornography and touched her under her clothes.
A report was filed with child protective services in New Hampshire and Massachusetts, a copy of which was forwarded to Methuen police.
According to the girl, the abuse would happen at the man’s house and sometimes at her house in New Hampshire, the report said.
On July 11, Methuen police contacted the District Attorney’s office, which advised local police to execute a search warrant.
The next day, police searched Lefebre’s home and a barn on his property, and seized property. State Police computer forensic experts found images and videos on one of the computers showing Lefebre having sex with the victim.
Police arrested Lefebre and he was booked at around 10 p.m. July 12.
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