October 12, 2012

Plattsburgh man charged with sexually abusing infant


---- — PLATTSBURGH — Police say a Plattsburgh man sexually abused an infant.

Joseph Harris, 45, was taken into custody Wednesday at his Margaret Street residence at about 8:47 a.m, according to City Police Lt. Pat Rascoe.

He said his department received a complaint late last week from officials at Clinton County Child Protective Services about an incident that allegedly occurred on Oct. 3 involving a victim who is less than a year old.

Following his arrest, Harris was taken to police headquarters on Pine Street, where he was processed and charged with first-degree sexual abuse, a felony.

He was arraigned Thursday in Plattsburgh City Court before Judge Mark J. Rogers; bail was set at $15,000 cash and $30,000 bond.

Rasoce said an order of protection for the baby was also issued during the arraignment.

Harris was then remanded to Clinton County Jail in lieu of bail and was still listed as being in custody there as of Thursday evening.

Rascoe said his department is working along with the Department of Social Services, Child Protective Services and the Clinton County District Attorney’s Office on the investigation.

Under New York State Penal Law, a person can be charged with first-degree sexual abuse when he or she subjects another person to sexual contact by forcible compulsion or when the other person is incapable of consent by reason of being physically helpless or when the person is under the age of 11 years old.

Police said no further details relating to the case could be released in order to protect the victim’s identity.

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