Columbia man accused of child molestation

9 months 1 week 4 days ago August 11, 2016 Aug 11, 2016 Thursday, August 11 2016 Thursday, August 11, 2016 2:36:00 PM CDT in News
By: Danielle Katz, KOMU 8 Digital Producer

COLUMBIA - Boone County sheriff's deputies arrested a Columbia man Wednesday morning after he was accused of fondling a 9-year-old girl.

Boone County Sheriff's Department Det. Tom O'Sullivan said he received a report on Aug. 3 in which the victim said 35-year-old Joshua Coates was tickling her and touched her genital area while the two were in a moving vehicle.

The report was filed after a child advocacy center conducted a forensic interview with the victim June 20.

Sullivan said Coates admitted to tickling the victim but denied touching her genital area.

The probable cause statement said Coates is also a suspect in the sexual assaults of two other girls in Boone County.

Coates was being held at the Boone County Jail Thursday on a $50,000 bond.

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