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Spokane Valley man accused of decades of sexual assault

Spokane Valley man accused of decades of sexual assault

SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash - Spokane Valley Sheriff's deputies and detectives want to know if there are more victims of an 85-year old man, arrested on multiple charges of child rape and child molestation.

Last week, deputies arrested Marvin E. Peterson on two counts of rape of a child in the first degree, one count of child molestation in the first degree, four counts of child molestation in the second degree and one count of unlawful imprisonment.

Detectives had been investigating Petersen for several months, looking into allegations of sexual abuse that occurred over the last two years. The victim in that case is not yet in her teens.

The father of the victim told KXLY his daughter was fine, a good kid, until about a year ago when this started.

"11-year-old girl spiraled out of control. No reason why. One week she got A's, B's and C's and basically the next week she's running away wanting to kill herself. It's been an absolute nightmare," he said.

"During that investigation, detectives learned of past unreported or uncharged sexual abuse by Peterson, stemming back to the mid to late 1950's," the Spokane County Sheriff's Office wrote in a news release. "Some of the known sexual assault behavior was reported to police in Eugene, Oregon, but due to the incidents occurring in the 1950's, charges could not be filed since the statute of limitations had expired."

All of the suspected victims in the case are young girls. They are family members or former family members or children who lived with or near Petersen. His current address is in the 13900 block of East 6th in Spokane Valley.

Before this case, Petersen had never been convicted of a crime. But, detectives believe that because of his "reported history of sexual abuse over the past 60 years, there are potential victims who have been been identified."

Detectives released Petersen's photo with the hope that any other victims or witnesses will come forward.

Anyone who has been victimized by Petersen or has information about suspicious activity, call Sexual Assault Unit Detective Brandon Armstrong at 509-477-6610.