Man sentenced to 15-40 years in prison for molesting two girls

March 19, 2024


By Allison Scarbrough, Editor

LUDINGTON — A 57-year-old man convicted of two counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct was sentenced to 15-40 years in prison in Mason County’s 51st Circuit Court Tuesday, March 19.

Joseph Fredrick Pereira pleaded no contest, Jan. 17.

Before Judge Susan K. Sniegowski handed down the sentence, the court heard a victim statement from the mother of the two girls, ages 9 and 10, who he assaulted.

“You have ruined our lives,” the mother said. “Forgiveness? No, never. I can’t forgive you for what you did.” The mother said she also was the victim of a sexual assault when she was 8 years old.

“I wanted to find you the night I found out, but it’s not worth it. You have no remorse,” she said as she wept. “You’re a sick, sick individual. There will never be any forgiveness from our family. Our lives have forever changed. Fifteen years, in my eyes, will never be enough for you — not when we have a lifetime of hurt and damage to deal with.”

Mason County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Beth Hand said Pereira was charged with one CSC count for each girl. Although, there could have been “numerous counts as it was an ongoing activity.

“These cases are extremely difficult due to the trauma it causes the victims.” The 15-year minimum was “a decision that was not reached lightly,” said Hand. “The only reason the prosecution agreed to the 15-year sentence was that it spared the victims from reliving the horrible things this man did to them. He was grooming them for his own pleasure.” Pereira penetrated both victims digitally.

Pereira, who has been lodged in the Mason County Jail on a $50,000 bond, received credit for 302 days served.

He must register as a sex offender for life and is subject to lifetime electronic monitoring.


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