Jail medical bills a factor in plea deal for man accused of molesting kids

EUGENE, Ore. - Prosecutors struck a deal for probation with a bed-ridden inmate accused of molesting three children in part to get the man - and his potential medical bills - out of the Lane County Jail.

Albert Leroy Golden, 70, faced 5 counts of first degree sex abuse. If convicted, each count carries a mandatory minimum prison sentence of 6 years.

He was accused of molesting three children who helped him after he suffered a stroke.

Golden pleaded guilty last Thursday to two counts of ttempted first-degree sexual abuse and two counts of third-degree sexual abuse.

District Attorney Alex Gardner said one factor in considering the plea deal was the ongoing expense of Golden's medical costs that would fall into the taxpayers laps if he were to stay in the county jail pending trial. Golden suffered a stroke before the alleged crimes, has fallen several times and now if bedridden, he said.

Gardner said other reasons for the lesser charge was considering what risk Golden poses to the community and how that risk level compares to other offenders.

Golden was sentenced to three years probation and has special conditions attached, including no contact with the victims, no contact with minors and lifetime registration as a sex offender.