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Clarion Man Accused of Having Sexual Relations with 14-Year-Old Girl
Court documents indicate the Clarion-based State Police filed the following criminal charges against 23-year-old Steven Eugene Dunkle, of Clarion:
– Aggravated Indecent Assault – Comp. Less Than 16, Felony 2
– Unlawful Contact With Minor – Sexual Offenses, Felony 2
– Corruption Of Minors – Defendant Age 18 or Above, Felony 3
– Indecent Assault Person Less 16 Years Age, Misdemeanor 2
According to a criminal complaint, Clarion-based State Police began an investigation after receiving two referrals from Clarion County Children and Youth Services (CYS) regarding allegations of child abuse they received from a mandated reporter. Trooper Bauer reviewed the referral, which reported Steven Dunkle was having sexual relations with a 14-year-old female.
Dunkle was interviewed on March 12.
According to the complaint, when asked if he knew why he was being interviewed, Dunkle stated he believed it was because “people kept saying” he was dating the juvenile victim, but he wasn’t. When asked if he’d ever had an intimate relationship with the victim, Dunkle said “No.”
The complaint states that when asked if he had any physical contact with the victim, Dunkle related they would “horse around” by giving each other piggyback rides. Dunkle allegedly told police, “most of the time, she is on her phone, and I am on my phone.”
According to the complaint, when pressed to be upfront and honest regarding his relationship with the victim, Dunkle stated, “nothing perverted happened,” but admitted he and the victim “started to like each other.” When further questioned regarding what he meant when he mentioned “nothing perverted,” Dunkle allegedly stated, “there was no sex or nothing,” and brought up the victim’s age.
Dunkle was informed that his demeanor and hesitation in answering questions indicated he might be withholding details. He then allegedly admitted that he and the victim kissed “a couple of times,” within the past few days. Under further questioning, he also admitted he initiated the kissing, the complaint indicates.
When questioned if he and the victim had done more than kiss, he was initially silent but then admitted to further sexual contact, according to the complaint.
The victim was also interviewed on March 12 with a parent and a CYS caseworker present.
The victim also admitted to the same sexual contact Dunkle had admitted to and provided a written statement, according to the complaint.
Dunkle was arraigned in front of Magisterial District Judge Jeffrey C. Miller at 5:35 p.m. on Tuesday, March 24.
Unable to post $15,000.00 monetary bail, he was lodged in the Clarion County Jail.
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for 9:00 a.m. on Tuesday, March 31, with Magisterial District Judge Duane L. Quinn presiding.
EDITOR’S NOTE 1: Extreme graphic details were not included due to the sexual nature of the alleged crimes.
EDITOR’S NOTE 2: Several details were removed from this article to help protect the identity of the victim.
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