Hightower Makes First Court Appearance Following Child Sex Abuse Charges

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A Thief River Falls man facing numerous charges for sexually abusing a child has made his first appearance in court.

Xavier Hightower, 28, appeared yesterday before District judge Tamara Yon, charged with four felony counts of criminal-sexual-conduct, three in the first degree and one second-degree charge.

Hightower asked the judge to change conditions-of-bail related to contact, with prosecution objecting and judge denying the request, citing seriousness of offenses. Hightower also asked the judge for 2 months to obtain council, with the judge allowing one month and set date for a Rule 8 hearing. Hightower’s next appearance has been scheduled for October 29th.

The allegations come after a child, who was acquainted with Hightower, and less than 13 years old, told investigators that he had sexually abused her multiple times over the last two to three years.

Hightower was taken into custody, following an investigation initiated by Thief River Falls School-Resource-Officer Dustin Arlt following an “anxiety attack” suffered by the child during class.

Each first-degree charge carries a maximum punishment of 30 years in prison, while the second-degree crime is punishable by up to 25 years in prison.

Hightower, who has not yet entered a plea in the case, is currently out on bail.

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