ND man accused of sexually assaulting teen in northwest Minnesota charged with perjury
CROOKSTON, Minn.—An Emerado, N.D., man awaiting trial on charges of criminal sexual conduct in northwest Minnesota has been accused of lying before a judge in the case.
George Robert Lyons, 37, was charged Monday, Oct. 15, in Polk County District Court with perjury and could face five years in prison if convicted of the crime. The charge stems from a December 2015 case in which he was charged with two counts of criminal sexual conduct.
In the earlier case, Lyons stands accused of sexually assaulting a teenager who, at the time of the alleged acts, was less than 15 years old, according to court documents. The sexual assault allegedly happened at Lyons' former home in East Grand Forks, Minn., court documents said.
In one instance, the accuser said Lyons threatened to "make her life a living hell" when she initially refused to perform oral sex on him, court documents said.
On the first-degree criminal sexual conduct charge, he faces 30 years in prison if convicted. The second charge, which is in the second degree, carries a maximum punishment of 25 years in prison.
Charging documents detailing the perjury charge state Lyons was interviewed by police on Jan. 20, 2014, at the East Grand Forks Police Station. In a recorded statement, police told Lyons he was not under arrest, court documents said. However, during a Sept. 20, 2016, hearing for the sexual assault case, Lyons is charged with testifying under oath to the judge multiple times that he was told he was under arrest.
Lyons was sentenced July 2 in Grand Forks District Court to 20 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of gross sexual imposition. Prosecutors said he sexually assaulted a teenage girl between July 2009 and January 2010.
He is appealing that conviction through the North Dakota Supreme Court.
A trial for the Polk County sexual assault charges is set for May 15.