James Lee Gaona.jpg

James Lee Gaona

A Newton man has been arrested and is accused of being involved in a sexual relationship with his step-daughter from age 4 to her current age of 12, and a police report says that the alleged crime was accidentally discovered when explicit text messages were found on a computer.

49-year-old James Lee Gaona was arrested on August 24th and he remains in the Newton County Jail after being charged with sexual abuse of a child-continuous, aggravated sexual assault of a child, and indecency with a child. His bond was set at $200,000.00.

The probable cause affidavit prepared by Newton Police Chief William L. Jackson said that on July 14th Gaona’s ex-wife went to Newton Police headquarters and told Chief Jackson that she believed that her ex-husband has been involved in a sexual relationship with his step-daughter from a previous relationship. The report said that the woman explained that although she was divorced from Gaona, she still maintained a good relationship with him, so much so that his step-daughter from the previous relationship would sometimes come and stay with her.

The affidavit said that it was during one of those stayovers that the woman discovered the girl having an inappropriate online conversation with another 12-year-old male classmate on her iPad, so she spoke to the child and educated her about inappropriate text messaging.

However, the affidavit said that when the woman delved deeper into the iPad, she discovered conversations between the child and her ex-husband that were “sexual in nature”.

The report said that the child was then taken to The Garth House in Beaumont where forensic interviews were conducted, and the child revealed details of sexual contact that began when she was 4.

According to the report, when asked approximately how many times this had occurred, she responded “Too many times to count”.


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