News

Child rape trial reset to July

Aaron Hahn's trial on child rape and related charges, originally set to begin May 18, has been rescheduled to start July 13 before Clallam County Superior Court Judge Brooke Taylor.

The delay was granted by Judge Ken Williams at a May 1 hearing to give Hahn's defense attorney Gary Sund more time to prepare.

Hahn also faces a June 15 trial on a

murder solicitation charge.

Deputy Prosecutor William Payne also will file a motion for reconsideration of a March 20 decision not to consolidate the two trials.

Payne had argued that evidence presented in one trial would be necessary for the other, but Judge Taylor disagreed.

Hahn remains in the Clallam County Jail on bail of $1 million for the murder solicitation charge and $75,000 for four other charges.

The 28-year-old Hahn, a Gresham, Ore., resident, was charged March 24, 2008, with four counts of child rape, one count of sexual exploitation of a minor, one count of possessing depictions of minors engaged in sexually explicit conduct and one count of stalking - domestic violence.

The charges stem from a relationship with a teenage Sequim girl who Hahn initially met online and his reported threatening behavior after she called off the relationship.

The girl went to police shortly after a Port Angeles woman was killed by an ex-boyfriend who had been stalking her. The girl feared a similar outcome.

Sequim Police arrested Hahn in March 2008 in a sting operation that brought him to Castle Rock, Wash., thus avoiding the need to extradite him from Oregon.

On May 27, 2008, while awaiting trial, Hahn was charged with solicitation of aggravated murder or solicitation of first-degree premeditated murder for allegedly attempting to hire someone to kill his alleged victim.

Hahn allegedly asked a fellow inmate to help him find someone to kill the underage Sequim girl with whom he reportedly had a relationship. Hahn allegedly provided detailed descriptions of the victim, her address and her daily routine to the inmate, offering payment in the form of a car and a later installment of $2,500 when the victim was killed.

The inmate came forward to corrections personnel, advising them of Hahn's intentions. They in turn contacted Sequim Police detectives.

Solicitation to commit first-degree murder is a Class A felony that carries a penalty of up to life in prison.



Reach Brian Gawley at bgawley@

sequimgazette.com.

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