A judge has found 49-year-old Nathan Benton of Kodiak guilty of two counts of sexual abuse of a minor in the second degree, and two counts of sexual abuse of a minor in the third degree.
Benton, who worked for the Kodiak School district for several years, chose not to have a jury trial, but to be tried by a judge. After the four day trial, retired Supreme Court Justice Joel Bolger, who serves as a judge as needed, found Benton guilty for events that happened in Kodiak in 2020.
Factors involved in this case include the 1990’s “Satch Carlson” law that applies to adults who are 10 years older than the minor-age victim, and the fact that they were living in the same home at the time of the abuse.
Benton, who resigned in 2021, was the middle and high school assistant wrestling coach in Kodiak. The family of the former female wrestler who police identified as the victim sued the Kodiak Island Borough School District for not adequately vetting its hires and for not acting to intervene when accusations of “grooming” behavior were made, which ultimately led to the sexual abuse.
Benton is being held without bail pending sentencing, which is scheduled for Nov. 30. He could receive between five years and 99 years.