Thousand Oaks man found guilty of sexually abusing child; faces life in prison

A Thousand Oaks man who was found guilty Thursday of sexually abusing a child is facing up to life in prison when he is sentenced next month, according to prosecutor Catherine Voelker.

Jurors in Ventura County Superior Court took about two hours to find Jeffrey Troy Freeman guilty of three felony counts: lewd acts upon a child, continuous sexual abuse on a child, and unlawful acts with a child under 10, said Voelker.

She said jurors also found true the special allegation that there was substantial sexual conduct with a child under 14 to be true.

Voelker said Freeman, who was related to the child, will be sentenced on Oct. 20. She said the boy, who was abused from ages 4 to 6, testified, and jurors told her after the trial that his testimony was very compelling.

Court testimony showed that abuse took place at Freeman’s home in Thousand Oaks.

Freeman’s lawyer, Steve Pell, told jurors during closing arguments that his client was innocent. Pell said Freeman’s mother checked on the child when he was visiting the house every 10 to 15 minutes. Pell said there was no opportunity for Freeman to abuse the boy.

Pell harshly criticized the prosecutor, saying the evidence against his client wasn’t there.

“She is not even feeding you baloney. She is feeding you garbage,” Pell told jurors.

Voelker said every element of every single crime had been proven beyond a reasonable doubt. She reminded jurors that Freeman’s computer had child pornography on it that he thought he had deleted, debunking the defense’s argument that a computer virus or a hacker had put the child pornography in the computer.

Voelker said Freeman preyed upon the innocence, trust and unconditional love of the child.

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