Mistrial declared in sexual assault case involving 4-year-old

A mistrial was declared last week in the Anoka County District Court trial of a Coon Rapids man charged with sexually assaulting a four-year-old girl.

Judge Thomas Fitzpatrick ruled a mistrial April 29 after the jury indicated it could not reach a verdict on felony first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct charges filed against Ronald Joseph Kujawa, 70.

According to the complaint, the girl was reported to be sexually touching herself and demonstrated it to investigators using a doll.

The complaint alleges that a man she identified as Kujawa sexually touched the girl and taught the girl to sexually touch herself.

The trial began April 22 and the jury began deliberations April 28. The jury was out for nine hours, according to Mark Giancola, defense attorney.

He was a bit surprised by the hung jury. “I expected an acquittal,” he said.

Both the girl, who is now almost six years old, and Kujawa testified at the trial, according to Giancola.

“He did not do it,” Giancola said. “Nothing occurred.”

Following the judge’s mistrial ruling, the court set Oct. 17 for a pre-trial hearing and Nov. 3 as the new trial date for Kujawa on the two charges.

But whether the Anoka County Attorney’s Office will move ahead with a new trial has not yet been determined, according to Amanda Vickstrom, community relations coordinator.

The prosecutor, C. Blair Buccicone, is currently “processing the trial” and the next step will be to decide whether or not to re-try the case, Vickstrom said.

Kujawa was arraigned in court on the charges Jan. 30, 2013. He remains free on several conditions and a no contact order is in effect.

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