Wednesday, January 30, 2019
Child molestation, statutory rape trial scheduled for Joplin man
The drug allegation was the seventh felony charge filed against Downum after he received a suspended sentence in Jasper County Circuit Court and was placed on five years supervised probation November 24, 2014, after pleading guilty to felony receiving stolen property. Two months earlier, he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor domestic assault charge.
The Pittsburg, Kansas Police Department arrested Downum on six felony charges in connection with a 2015 incident in which Downum "used a handgun to rob someone of methamphetamine," according to a Pittsburg Morning Sun article.
In October 2016, the Crawford County District Attorney's office reached a plea agreement with Downum in which he pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. In exchange for the plea, two felony charges of aggravated assault and single felony charges of aggravated armed robbery, aggravated battery and aggravated endangering a child were dropped.
Downum's jury trial on the latest Jasper County charges, child molestation, statutory rape, resisting arrest and once again, felon in possession of a firearm is scheduled to begin February 5 in Jasper County Circuit Court with Judge Dean Dankelson presiding.
Downum's freedom at the time of his crime not only potentially put a child at risk but also the Joplin Police Department officers who eventually arrested him.
According to a JPD news release, an officer was checking a residence near 8th and Turk in the late afternoon April 16, 2018, to see if Downum was there and saw him walking out of the house east on 6th Street.
The officer pulled up behind Downum, got out of his car and told Downum he was under arrest. Downum turned and began running.
The officer sent a K9 after him and Downum was taken into custody.
Things could have turned out much worse. When Downum was finally subdued, the officer discovered he was carrying a loaded handgun.
When the four felony charges were filed against Downum, it made 11 he had been charged with while serving a supervised probation.