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WESTERLY — A 65-year-old Westerly man is facing five counts of child molestation following an investigation into reports that he had sexually assaulted a young girl on several occasions between 2007 and 2010.

Westerly police arrested the man, Thomas E. Johnston, of 14 Yankee Drive, on Wednesday on charges including two counts of first-degree child molestation and three counts of scond-degree child molestation. Johnston had been indicted by a grand jury in Providence on Aug. 2 and agreed to turn himself in after the police contacted him late Tuesday.

Westerly Police Chief Shawn Lacey said the arrest stems from an investigation that began in February 2018 when the victim, then 17, came forward with her mother to report the abuse.

According to Lacey, the victim reported that at the ages of 6 and 10, Johnston had called her to the basement area of his home and coaxed here into taking part in activity that included sexual intercourse. The young woman detailed other ways in which Johnston had harassed her, including leaving sticky notes and other items that indicated he loved her.

The victim was known to Johnston, who had married into her family, and the two were living together in a home with other family members when the incidents allegedly occurred.

Lacey said that because of the nature of the case, the Westerly Police Department turned its evidence over to the Attorney General's office, leading to the state grand jury's decision.

Johnston was scheduled for arraignment Wednesday, the police said, but information regarding the case had not been entered in the state's online judicial website.

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