Man arrested for child molestation


An investigation into reports that four children under the age of 11 had been sexually molested by a Seymour man in 2014 led to his arrest Wednesday evening in Jennings County.

James Alfred Hyland, 47, of the 300 block of South Broadway Street, faces four counts of child molesting, a Class C felony, and four counts of incest, a Class B felony.

The investigation began after one of the children told a neighbor about being molested, according to the probable cause affidavit signed by Detective Jim Blevins with the Jennings County Sheriff’s Department.

Police said the investigation revealed several incidents involving Hyland and the children took place between Jan. 1, 2014, and June 30, 2014, in the home where the children lived. The children are ages 2, 4, 9 and 10.

Detectives and officials with Jennings County Child Protective Services and the Children’s Advocacy Center of Southeastern Indiana in Dillsboro interviewed the children July 29.

All four children told police that Hyland — a registered sex offender in Jackson County — had been abusing them, according to court documents. The children also told police they were afraid of Hyland, and he had told them not to tell anyone about the abuse, Blevins said.

Blevins and an official with Jennings County Child Protective Services interviewed Hyland on Aug. 5, 2014. During questioning, Hyland denied any wrongdoing, saying he did not touch any of the four children inappropriately, according to court documents.

He told police he had been a registered sex offender in Jackson County for six years due to a past felony sexual battery case. That conviction occurred July 26, 2007, in Jackson Circuit Court after Hyland pleaded guilty to the charge.

In the summer of 2014, Hyland was arrested in Jennings County for failing to register as a sex offender, according to court documents.

The warrant for his arrest in the sexual abuse case was issued Monday by Jennings Circuit Judge Jon Webster.

Hyland was booked into the Jennings County Jail, where he was being held on $250,000. Hyland also lists a Jennings County residence as his home.

Hyland’s pretrial conference is set for May 1 in Jennings Circuit Court, according to court documents.

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