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Police: Man Assaulted Girl

— A Hartford man pleaded not guilty this week to charges that he sexually assaulted an eight-year-old Lebanon girl earlier this year.

Edwin H. Rathbun, 39, faces up to life in prison on two charges of aggravated sexual assault for incidents that allegedly occurred in July.

Rathbun was released on $10,000 bail on Monday after a brief hearing in Windsor Superior Court.

His attorney, Peter Decato of Lebanon, did not respond to a request for comment.

The victim told police that Rathbun threatened to shoot members of her family if she told anyone about his alleged actions, according to court documents.

Nonetheless, the victim told her mother that she wanted to go to police.

“She wanted to tell a police officer, so the police officer could talk to him, so he would stop,” the girl’s mother said in a sworn statement, according to an affidavit filed by Hartford police officer Mark McComas.

As a general practice, the Valley News does not identify victims of alleged sex crimes.

The victim knew Rathbun.

In an interview with police, Rathbun denied doing anything wrong, according to McComas’ affidavit.

Rathbun voluntarily reported to the Hartford police station on Monday and was arrested, according to court documents.

A former girlfriend of Rathbun’s said she had witnessed some of his interactions with the victim and that he had demonstrated “abnormal behaviors,” according to the affidavit.

A status conference in the case is scheduled for December.

Mark Davis can be reached at mcdavis@vnews.com or 603-727-3304.