New details in the case against the former Berthoud police officer accused of sexually assaulting a minor family member emerged Monday at a hearing where a judge found probable cause for the charges.
Out on bail, Jeremy Yachik sat in a Larimer County courtroom as allegations against him unfolded during the cross-examination of Fort Collins Police Det. Siobhan Seymour, who works on the crimes against persons unit.
Seymour answered questions about her September 2014 interview with the alleged victim, now 18, who claimed the handful of incidents of Yachik’s sexually charged behavior toward her began when she was about 4 years old and resumed when she was a teenager.
At the end the hour-long hearing, Eighth Judicial District Court Judge Gregory Lammons ruled there is probable cause to pursue the Class 3 felony charge of sex assault on a child by someone in position of trust against the 39-year-old former police officer.
Prosecutor Cara Boxberger said the allegations discussed in detail Monday were “most favorable to the prosecution.” However, Yachik’s attorney, Erik Fischer, argued that the victim’s claims have “zero corroboration.”
Fischer noted that in 2013, before the victim came forward with the sex assault claims last year, she was interviewed by Child Advocacy Center staff and denied that Yachik ever inappropriately touched her. She also admitted to lying about a claim she had made that a family member had sexually assaulted her in 2010, two months before an alleged incident with Yachik, Fischer said.
In 2014, Yachik pleaded guilty to child abuse for bounding his then-15-year-old daughter’s hands with zip ties and force-feeding her hot sauce. That case — for which he was sentenced to three years probation and 30 days of work release — ultimately led to the disbandment of the Berthoud Police Department.
Yachik’s former fiancee claims she reported the abuse to Police Chief Glen Johnson, who did nothing. Around that time, a video showing Yachik kicking and hitting his daughter circulated online, and the ensuing criminal case drew widespread media attention. The police department was dissolved after Johnson’s inaction came to light.
The next hearing in Yachik’s sex assault case is scheduled for Monday, when his requested modifications to his bond provisions will be heard and considered. It’s unclear when he posted bail, which was reduced from $100,000 to $50,000 in September.