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Former reality TV star Rich Fretterd pleaded guilty to sex assault on a child

Published: Dec. 14, 2017 at 12:16 PM MST
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UPDATE 11/26/18:

A former reality TV star pleaded guilty to sex assault on a child in Teller County.

On Monday Richard Fretterd entered the guilty plea to three counts of sex assault on a child. The sentencing for Fretterd is scheduled for Feb. 26. He faces up to four years to life in prison and will have to register as a sex offender. Each of the victims was reportedly younger than 15.

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UPDATE 1/29/18:

A judge decided there is enough evidence against a former reality TV star facing charges of child sex assault to go to trial.

An arraignment for Rich Fretterd has been set for March 5 for charges tied to sex assault on a child and violation of bail bonds. The hearing on Monday was closed to the public because the case involves minors.

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ORIGINAL STORY 12/22/17:

A former reality TV star who is now facing 49 counts for child sex assault tried to evade law enforcement.

The Teller County Sheriff's Office says Rich Fretterd, formerly of The Weather Channel show "Prospectors," failed to show up to get an ankle monitor Wednesday.

But his taste of freedom swiftly soured when deputies caught up with Fretterd at his daughter's home in Colorado Springs.

11 News was there when he was captured.

This was the scenario prosecutors had warned of, arguing at Fretterd's bond hearing Monday that he was a flight risk with the means to skip town. Nonetheless, a judge set Fretterd's bond at $25,000, lower than requested, but ruled he would undergo mandatory GPS monitoring while out on bond, would not be permitted to leave Colorado, and would have to surrender his passport.

After his day on the lam, 11 News partner The Gazette reports he is now being held without bond.

The Teller County Sheriff’s Office received a complaint Dec. 3 from a female victim who reported she and another victim had been repeatedly sexually assaulted by a neighbor over the course of three years during 2013-2016. The girls were ages 12 and 15 at the time of the reported crimes.

Detectives from the Teller County Sheriff’s Office opened an investigation and were able to gain enough information to make an arrest in this case. Fretterd, 64, turned himself in at the Teller County Jail on Dec. 13 after sheriff’s detectives notified him he had an arrest warrant.

In arrest papers obtained by 11 News, the victim stated Fretterd lived next door to her and was the manager of Big Jim's trailer park. The victim said Fretterd started by paying cash for minor chores such as washing dishes and doing yard work.

Once he gained the trust of the victims, Fretterd allegedly started exposing himself, offering more money if they were to view him pleasuring himself, according to arrest papers. As the situation escalated over time, Fretterd allegedly began offering more money to have victims "jerk him off," "suck him off" and let him "go down on them." The victims agreed to these requests on a weekly basis for years. Fretterd reportedly supplied the victims with marijuana, beer, whiskey and other alcoholic beverages to "loosen them up" before sexual contact.

Fretterd was on the mining show in 2015. The show followed prospectors looking for rare gems.

If you have any information on this case, please call 719-472-4347.