A former Dubuque police officer will not spend time in prison for sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl.
On Monday, Iowa District Court Judge Monica Ackley, agreed to a plea deal between prosecutors and Kyle Cross, 30.
As part of the deal, Cross won’t spend time in prison, but must register as a sex offender and will remain on lifetime supervision.
Cross had sex with a girl who he met online. He thought she was 19. She was actually 14.
Cross told TV-9 he’s relieved not to be going to prison but he still maintains there’s problem with the law in a case like his. He says the law should include exceptions if the victim lies about his or her age.
After conducting a pre-sentence investigation, the Department of Corrections actually recommended Cross receive a deferred sentence. That would have been a lesser sentence and would have removed the sex abuse charge from his record after ten years of probation.
Judge Ackley ignored that recommendation and gave him the tougher sentence.
Cross admits, based on law, he is guilty. However, he says that’s a law that dates back four decades, long before social media or even the internet. Cross says having to register as a sex offender and being a convicted felon is going to severely impact the rest of his life.
“It does bother me. The fact that I am classified in a bracket that I guess I don’t feel like I belong in,” said Cross.
Cross has written a book about his situation and his plight to change the laws.He signed a deal with a publisher and expects to release the book in 2017.
Dubuque County Attorney Ralph Potter said he is happy Judge Ackley stuck to the terms of the plea deal, instead of agreeing to a lesser sentence. Potter says Ackley also banned Cross from being able to use online dating websites.