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Forum staff reports, Published May 07 2012

Moorhead man gets lifetime term after raping, threatening to expose photo of 16-year-old

MOORHEAD – A 52-year-old Moorhead man was sentenced to life in prison on Monday for raping a 16-year-old girl and threatening to expose a nude photo of her unless she let him perform a sexual act on her.

At a hearing in Clay County District Court, Judge Lisa Borgen sentenced William John Earles to the prison term after Earles pleaded guilty in March to a charge of third-degree criminal sexual conduct.

Earles could be eligible for parole after 15 years in jail, but Borgen said she’d recommend that he be civilly committed if parole is being considered, citing his criminal background as a registered sex offender.

“You’re about as bad a sexual deviant as I’ve seen,” Borgen said at the hearing. “You are a very calculating, dangerous menace to society.”

Earles must also pay a court fee of $1,085 and victim restitution of $857.