A 56-year-old man used threats to coerce a girl into sexual activity over three years, an investigator said.
Ernesto Rosalio Martinez told the girl, now 12, she’d never see a certain family member again if she told police about his sexual advances, Detective Lt. Coley Judy said.
Martinez has been arrested on three counts of sexual battery. He is held at the Harrison County jail on a $250,000 bond set by Judge Brandon Ladner.
He had been dating one of the girl’s family members, and his threats to the girl also implied threats to against her relative, Judy said.
An affidavit alleges the sexual assaults occurred at the relative’s home in Saucier from April 2014 until December 2016, he said.
The girl eventually told her mother, and the mother contacted the Harrison County Sheriff’s Department.
The girl participated in a forensic interview and charges where signed against Martinez on three particular assaults, Judy said.
Martinez was jailed Monday. The maximum penalty for one count of sexual battery is 30 years in prison.