State dismisses indecency with children cases

Jessica Priest By Jessica Priest

Feb. 5, 2014 at 6:05 p.m.
Updated Feb. 4, 2014 at 8:05 p.m.

A man who moved to Katy after the Victoria Police Department began investigating him for indecency with a child does not face charges anymore.

Johna Stallings, a Victoria County assistant district attorney, signed a motion to dismiss the case against Enoch Santo Rivera.

A judge granted the motion Wednesday.

The two alleged victims, who were thought to be 14 or younger at the time of the incidents, were unable to testify, according to the dismissal document.

Rivera, 30, was charged with four counts of indecency with a child, sexual contact; one count of indecency with a child exposes; one count of possession of child pornography and two counts of injury to a child with intent to bodily injure for events that occurred July 1, 2012, according to his Nov. 29, 2012, indictment.

The children's mother was also indicted in 2012. She was charged with one count of possession of child pornography, two counts of injury to a child and two counts of endangering a child, criminal negligence.

Her case was dismissed Monday, too, because the children were unable to testify.

The Advocate is not reporting the name of the mother to protect the identity of the children.

Rivera and the children's mother were dating at the time, according to a previous report.

Stallings would not explain why the children could not take the stand. She said although the case was dismissed, the children are protected.

"Not only did the police department conduct an extensive investigation, but we (the district attorney's office) have been working with the family of the victims to get to this point," Stallings said. "I take these cases very seriously, and I'm very aggressive on them. ... I feel at this time that this is the correct result."

Stallings said she may present the cases against Rivera and the children's mother to a grand jury in the future.

Rivera's attorney, Arnold Hayden, could not be reached for comment Wednesday afternoon.

David Smith, who represented the children's mother, said he thought Stallings made the right decision.

"I believe my client was innocent of the charges," he said.



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