AP NEWS

Wyoming man acknowledges abducting young girl, abusing her

December 19, 2019 GMT

CASPER, Wyo. (AP) — A Wyoming man has acknowledged abducting a young girl before exposing himself and trying to molest her.

The Casper Star-Tribune reports 32-year-old Joshua Hicks pleaded guilty Wednesday to aggravated kidnapping as part of a deal with prosecutors that calls for at least a 30-year prison term.

Hicks told the judge Wednesday that he took the girl in his pickup from outside a Casper apartment complex so he could sexually abuse her. He acknowledged exposing himself and trying to touch her inappropriately before she fought back.

Court documents say the girl was no older than 5 when she was abducted while playing outside July 3, sparking an 18-hour search that closed with Hicks’ confession to a Casper police detective.

According to court documents, Hicks told the detective he pulled the girl in his truck, where he masturbated and put the child’s hand on his genitals. The detective also said Hicks acknowledged he had done the same to other children twice.