Sabattus woman convicted in sexual assault of 8-year-old

·2 min read

Jan. 14—RUMFORD — A 37-year-old Sabattus woman was convicted Friday of participating in the rape of an 8-year-old girl in 2019.

An Oxford County Superior Court judge in South Paris found Bethany Ringuette guilty of gross sexual assault, a felony for which she faces up to 30 years in prison. She was found not guilty of a charge of sexual exploitation of a minor.

Ringuette and her boyfriend, 31-year-old Travis Walker of Bethel, were arrested in the summer of 2019. Walker was convicted of gross sexual assault and other charges last year and is now serving seven years in prison.

Rumford police investigated the assaults on the girl, which they said occurred between February and May 2019 at an apartment in Rumford.

In court documents, police said Walker showed the victim explicit videos on his cellphone before assaulting her. After assaulting the victim, police said, Walker gave her money and bought her snacks at a convenience store. The victim told police Walker assaulted her more than once.

Ringuette, identified in the police report as Walker's girlfriend, was present during one of the assaults and recorded it on her cellphone, according to court documents.

Ringette is expected to be sentenced for her crime next month in South Paris. She remains free on bail pending sentencing.

"I am very pleased with the outcome of this particular trial," said Rumford police Chief Tony Milligan. "When kids fall victim to this kind of predatory perversion, it breaks our hearts. We turn that feeling into professional motivation to do the very best investigation we can, in cooperation with the District Attorney's Office, to gather the evidence needed to hold these two accountable for their unthinkable actions. I am proud of the bravery of the victim and of the officers and other witnesses in the case who testified, as well as the prosecutor who handled the case to bring justice for the victim."

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