A onetime northern Minnesota police officer has pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a teenager many times in recent years and stalking the teen while on duty in his squad car.
Joshua M. Demmerly, 30, of Warroad, entered his plea Monday in Roseau County District Court to all the charges against him: kidnapping, third-degree criminal sexual conduct and stalking in connection with the alleged assaults, which spanned from 2017 to early this year.
He entered what is known as an Alford plea, meaning he acknowledges there is enough evidence to win conviction but maintains his innocence. He remains jailed pending sentencing on Nov. 8.
The case was investigated by state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension (BCA). Demmerly was first placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation and has since left the department.
According to the criminal complaint:
The accuser, now an adult, told BCA agents of more than 10 sexual assaults by Demmerly and accurately described the interior of Demmerly's home, where they spent the night "on multiple occasions." The assaults allegedly occurred while the accuser was 16 and 17.
Demmerly allegedly said there was a felony investigation underway against the teen and he could offer her protection from it. He was also was accused of saying there was a search warrant out for the teenager's phone but would not execute it if the teen spent more time with him.
The accuser reported receiving repeated phone calls and text messages from Demmerly expressing his love. Demmerly went so far as sending photos of him holding a gun to his head and threatening to kill himself, the criminal complaint said.
After one visit to his house, the accuser reported waking up naked after a night of drinking and unable to recall what had happened.
Demmerly also was accused of pulling the teen over while he was on patrol and ordering the teen to exit the car and kiss him. In one instance, he allegedly turned on his emergency lights, turned off his squad car camera and took the teen into custody in front of others at a party.