Sexual predator to serve up to 235 years in prison

Mercer County
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A sentencing hearing was held on Monday, Nov. 26, 2018 for a man convicted of sexual assault and sexual abuse.  A jury convicted Jesse James Collns, 36, of Oakvale, WV on 26 counts involving three children who were under his care from Jan. 1, 2009 to March 1, 2017.

During the trial, Collins testified in his own defense.  He told the jury he had been sexually molested as a child.  Prosecutors played statements where he confessed to molesting the three children.  Testimony was also given by two of the three victims.

“I want to thank the victims or their courage in coming forth to testify, as well as Detective Steven Sommers with the Mercer County Sheriff’s Department for his skillful handling of this unfortunate situation,”  Mercer County Prosecuting Attorney George Sitler said.  “I would also like to thank Sgt. Melissa Clemons of the West Virginia State Police, Crimes Against Children Unite for her additional assistance in this case.”

Collins was sentenced to serve 95 to 225 years in the penitentiary.  Of those, 103 to 235 years will be served at the same time.

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