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Bail lowered for child abuse suspect

By Stephen Betts | Mar 20, 2020

Rockland — Bail was lowered Wednesday for a 64-year-old Rockland man accused of sexually assaulting a girl over a four-year period.

Judge Paul Mathews set bail at $5,000 cash for Donald N. Wood during a hearing held Wednesday, March 18 in the Knox County court.

Wood has been held in jail since he was arrested Oct. 17, and charged with 10 counts of gross sexual assault, 11 counts of unlawful sexual contact, and one count of disorderly conduct. Bail was initially set at $25,000 surety.

While in jail he made multiple telephone calls to the victim's mother, which violated terms of a protection order she had received, according to a motion filed by the district attorney's office which asked the court to revoke his bail.

During the March 18 hearing, Assistant District Attorney Lynn Madison asked that Wood be held without bail for violating the protection order.

Defense attorney Jeremy Pratt said Wood would admit to violating the protection order and be sentenced to time served for that one offense. Pratt then asked for new lower bail to be set for the sexual assaults.

Pratt argued that Wood's bail was high compared to comparable cases. The defense attorney also argued that given the age of his client and an underlying health issue that makes him potentially more susceptible to coronavirus, that bail should be lowered.

Judge Mathews agreed to set bail at $5,000 cash.

An affidavit filed by Rockland police states that the girl said she was subjected to sexual abuse by Wood from 2013 through 2016, starting when she was 12 years old.

Wood denied the allegation, according to the affidavit. He initially agreed to take a polygraph test but later retained a lawyer and refused.

The department obtained an arrest warrant and took Wood into custody.

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