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Judge issues warrant in abuse case

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A warrant has been issued for a Rio Rancho man who failed to appear for his arraignment on charges of sexually abusing a 6-year-old girl.

Seth Gilliam, 37, is charged with criminal sexual penetration of a child under 13, criminal sexual contact with a minor, intimidation of a witness and child abuse, all felonies. His arraignment was set for Jan. 6, but 13th Judicial District Attorney Lemuel Martinez said Gilliam didn’t arrive in court, so the bench warrant was issued.

According to Rio Rancho Police reports, in January 2013, a woman told officers her great-granddaughter told her that Gilliam, an acquaintance of the family, had forced her to perform oral sex on him.

When the girl was interviewed, she told the investigator Gilliam had repeatedly committed the abuse and threatened to kill her if she told anyone, according to reports. The child said she informed her mother anyway and was told she didn’t have to go back to Gilliam’s residence.

When police spoke with Gilliam, he repeatedly denied doing anything inappropriate with the girl. He said several times that he thought a particular relative was sexually abusing her and her parents didn’t report it, according to the reports.

Police closed the case in August 2013. According to court records, a grand jury indicted Gilliam in November.

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