Booking photo for Robert De Grey (Courtesy: Cache County Jail)

LOGAN — A 36-year-old Salt Lake City man has been sentenced to jail for molesting a Smithfield boy last year. Robert G. De Grey was ordered to turn himself into the Cache County Jail by Saturday morning to begin incarceration.

De Grey was sentenced during a virtual hearing in 1st District Court Monday morning, appearing by web conference. He previously accepted a plea deal, pleading guilty to one count of attempted forcible sexual abuse, a third-degree felony.

Last June, Smithfield City police officers learned that a teenage boy had disclosed during a forensic interview that De Grey, a relative, had touched him inappropriately. The defendant had coerced the boy to touch him in a sexual nature also.

The teenager’s mother later contacted De Grey during a recorded phone call. During the conversation, De Grey admitted to molesting the victim.

During Monday’s sentencing, defense attorney Susanne Gustin said De Grey was “horribly sorry” for what he did. She asked the court for a lesser sentence, explaining that her client had already lost his job at the University of Utah because of his arrest.

De Grey told the court he was sorry and wouldn’t break the law again.

Cache County Attorney Griffin Hazard said the case was terribly concerning and prosecutors are seeing an increase in similar crimes being committed. He disagreed with Gustin’s request for a lighter sentence, explaining that the defendant’s job loss didn’t merit less jail time. He said the defendant had abused the relationship of trust with the victim.

The victim’s family sent a letter that Hazard read a portion of. In it, they asked for the maximum sentence, in hopes that no other family had to go through what they did.

Judge Angela Fonnesbeck said it was heartbreaking how the victim’s life had been impacted by De Gray’s “selfish desires.” She rejected Gustin’s request for less jail time, stating the court and community can’t tolerate what the defendant did. She ordered De Gray to serve 120 days in jail, followed by 48 months probation, and have no contact with the victim or his family.

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