SKOWHEGAN, Maine — A Norridgewock man charged with t hree counts of unlawful sexual contact with three children at his wife’s day care center made his initial appearance in court on Wednesday and did not enter a plea.
Horace Barstow, 67, faces up to 10 years in prison for the Class B crimes. He appeared in Skowhegan District Court in front of Judge Robert Mullen.
Barstow said few words in front of the judge. Because he was charged with a felony offense, he was not asked to enter a plea.
Barstow is accused of having sexual contact with three girls, who were 6 years old at the time of the alleged assaults, which occurred between Nov. 1 and Dec. 7, 2012, according to police.
The assaults took place at his home, which was also a day care center.
Barstow was arrested on March 8.
ABC 123 Daycare, which was operated by his wife, Barbara, is now closed. The day care’s license was voluntarily surrendered by Barbara Barstow last month after the Maine Department of Health and Human Services issued a 10-day suspension of its license on March 15.
Barstow was taken to Somerset County Jail in Madison, where he was bailed on $250. On Wednesday, Judge Mullen ordered Barstow to post $20,000 in surety or $2,000 cash, which Barstow did. His next court appearance is on April 24.
Maine State Police Detective Christopher Tupper, who arrested Barstow, is interviewing parents of children who attended the day care in order to determine if there were any additional victims, Maine Department of Public Safety Spokesman stephen McCausland said last month.
He is still ordered to have no contact with females under the age of 16 and have no contact with the victims or visit any place where the victims may be located.
To reach a sexual assault advocate, call the Statewide Sexual Assault Crisis and Support Line at 800-871-7741, TTY 888-458-5599. This free and confidential 24-hour service is accessible from anywhere in Maine. Calls are automatically routed to the closest sexual violence service provider.