A Morgan County Superior Court jury on Thursday, Aug. 26, found a Monroe man guilty of child molestation.

Arnold Merle McDonald, 62, was sentenced to 50 years by Superior Court Judge Alison T. Burleson, Ocmulgee Judicial Circuit, following the guilty verdict. According to Morgan County Superior Court documents, Judge Burleson ordered that McDonald spend the first 49 years of his sentence in incarceration and the last year on probation. McDonald is to be given credit for time served in incarceration at the Morgan County Detention Center since February, 2020. The sentence essentially orders the 62-year-old man to spend the rest of his life in detention.

Court records state that McDonald was arrested on Feb. 21, 2020, by Sgt. Wes Thompson, Madison Police Department. A warrant alleged that between 7 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. on Feb. 20, McDonald enticed a 6-year-old female by pulling the child into a closet and then removing his pants, the child’s pants and then inappropriately touched the child. The incident took place at a Micha Way residence. McDonald has remained incarcerated since his arrest.

McDonald was charged with one count child molestation and two counts enticing a child for indecent purposes. The jury returned a guilty verdict on all counts.

The one day trial ended on Thursday, Aug. 26. The jury deliberated approximately an hour and a half before returning the verdict. McDonald was sentenced to 20 years for child molestation and another 30 years for the two counts of enticing a child for indecent purposes.

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