Police charge inmate with sex assaults

Incarcerated man indicted in three new cases

A Stratham man, already incarcerated for sexually assaulting three children in Stratham and Massachusetts, has been indicted for three sexual assaults he allegedly committed against three young girls in Jaffrey between 2002 to 2007.

Ronald Mattheson, 68, is charged with two counts of aggravated felonious sexual assault and one count of felonious sexual assault. He was indicted at the Cheshire County Courthouse in Keene on Aug. 25. Mattheson will be arraigned through a video feed on Wednesday, since he is already imprisoned in the N.H. State Prison for Men in Concord.

According to Cheshire County Assistant Attorney John Webb, Mattheson allegedly sexually assaulted two of the victims in Jaffrey in 2005.

Webb said all three girls were under 13 years old at the time Mattheson allegedly assaulted them.

Mattheson is also being charged with repeatedly assaulting a third victim from 2002 to 2007. Webb said that Mattheson allegedly violated the third victim more than once. Webb said the prosecution is charging Mattheson with a pattern charge because the victim was too young at the time of the suspected assault to remember how many times it occurred.

Denise Chatel, the Jaffrey Police Department’s office administrator, said on Friday that the Jaffrey police learned about the alleged crimes from one of the victim’s parents. The investigation spanned about a year.

Webb said it’s too early in the case to accurately say how much additional jail time Mattheson would be facing if he is convicted. He said state statute allows prosecutors to seek a 10- to 20-year prison sentence for someone indicted on an aggravated felonious sexual assault charge, barring a consecutive term. Webb said someone convicted of felonious sexual assault can be imprisoned for three and a half to seven years.

Mattheson is currently serving 12 to 30 years in N.H. State Prison after he pleaded guilty to six counts of aggravated sexual assault against three girls over extended periods of time. Kirsten Wilson, Rockingham County assistant attorney, said Mattheson repeatedly sexually assaulted a Stratham girl starting when she was 4 and ending when she was 6. He sexually assaulted two other young Massachusetts girls in the 1990s. Their families chose not to go forward with the charges until the third victim came forward in 2013.

If Mattheson serves the maximum sentence on the Rockingham County charges, he would be imprisoned until 2045.

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