Casper Man to Plead Guilty to Sexual Abuse of Teenage Girl
A man accused of performing sex acts with a teenage girl multiple times over the course of roughly two years is set to enter guilty pleas as part of an agreement with prosecutors.
Forest Vincent Price is set to plead guilty to two counts of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor as part of an agreement with prosecutors. He pleaded not guilty and not guilty by reason of mental illness or deficiency during his arraignment Aug. 25.
Court records say Price in August told the court he had been diagnosed with schizophrenia.
In exchange for Price's guilty pleas, the state will dismiss the remaining counts that will be filed in a third amended information. The first amended information charged three counts of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor and five counts of third-degree sexual abuse of a minor.
The plea deal calls for Price to serve 15-20 years in prison on each of the two counts, with those sentences running concurrently.
Price was set to plead guilty Tuesday morning in Natrona County District Court to two counts of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor, but the state asked for the hearing to be stopped and postponed after attorneys realized Price was about to plead guilty to the wrong charges.
As filed under Wyoming Statute 6-2-314(a)(ii), the charges of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor specified that Price would have been "the victim's legal guardian or an individual specified in W.S. 6-4-402" at the time the crimes were committed, which Price was not. Therefore, he could not have been found guilty under that subsection.
Price was previously charged under a 6-2-314(a)(i), which carries a minimum 25-year sentence upon conviction. But, since the plea deal called for a 15- to 20-year sentence, prosecutors had to refile under a different subsection to avoid the 25-year minimum.
During that process, the charges were incorrectly refiled under subsection 6-2-314(a)(ii).
A new court date will be set once the state refiles charges under 6-2-315, the statute dealing with second-degree sexual abuse of a minor.
Charging papers say the victim told a detective her first sexual encounter with Price, who was her father's roommate, occurred in June 2013. The victim was 12 years old at the time.
Further sex acts allegedly took place in March and June 2015. The victim said she later realized a relationship between herself and Price was not going to happen, according to an affidavit, so she sent "break-up" messages to Price through Facebook.
The victim reportedly said she "broke off the relationship" because "she realized it was not good to be involved with Price because he was married and was going to have another baby," court documents say.
Price reportedly admitted to a detective that the victim snuck out of her house to meet with him on four or five occasions. He denied that they were in a sexual relationship, according to an affidavit.
Price reportedly agreed to take a polygraph test and said the results would indicate nothing ever happened. A detective later got a call that Price would not be coming in for the polygraph and would not speak to the detective without his attorney.