Teen sentenced to seven years in prison for sex crime

Wednesday, November 2, 2005

A Marshall teen, 16 at the time of his arrest, was sentenced to seven years in prison last week.

James Lee Hostetter, now 17, was initially charged as an adult with statutory sodomy in the first degree, an unclassified felony that carries a sentence of 10 years to life in the Missouri Department of Corrections.

Hostetter was accused of fondling and having sexual contact with a child who was then 3 years old. The incidents are believed to have taken place in late 2004 in Hostetter's home.

In Saline County Circuit Court last week, Hostetter pleaded guilty to a lesser charge of class C felony deviate sexual assault. Dennis Rolf, presiding judge of the 15th Judicial Circuit, handed down the maximum sentence allowed for the crime. However, Rolf retained jurisdiction of the case, meaning Hostetter could be released on probation after serving 120 days of the term.

According to court records, Hostetter initially confessed the crimes to his mother after she received complaints from school personnel that he was inappropriately touching other students.

In a statement to police, Hostetter confessed to the acts, saying he did it because he was mad at the boy's father for an argument they had earlier.

Contact Chris Post at


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