Convicted child molester receives lengthy sentence

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A twice-convicted child molester could likely spend
the rest of his life behind bars.   

Jerry Alva “J.R.” Gregston, 49, of Williams, was sentenced on Nov. 13 to 25 years to life for sodomy of a child under the age of 10 and 15 years to life for oral copulation on the same victim, to be served consecutively. 

A jury found Gregston guilty of the two charges on Sept. 27. 

Judge Jeffrey A. Thompson denied Gregston’s request last week to serve his sentences concurrently, which could have greatly reduced his time behind bars, largely because the jury found that the offenses occurred on separate occasions, and because of the horrific nature of the crime on a child who was under his care.   

The victim was the second child to come forward with an allegation of sexual abuse. 

Gregston was first arrested in 2011 and charged with 14 counts of felony sexual abuse that included sexual intercourse with a child under 10 years old, sodomy, performing lewd acts, and oral copulation. 

He pleaded no contest on May 9, 2012, to two of the charges and was sentenced to an upper term of 16 years in prison for the continuous sexual abuse of a child, and eight years for oral copulation by force or fear, to be served consecutively. 

Gregston was seven years into his 24-year prison sentence at Mule Creek State Prison, in Ione, when the Colusa County District Attorney leveled two new molestation charges on March 6, 2018, after the victim, now older, came forward with the allegations of abuse. 

Chief Deputy District Attorney Brendan Farrell said Gregston’s crimes were of a “heinous nature,” and that it warranted the consecutive sentence. 

In a statement he made to the judge last week, Gregston admitted the sexual crimes against his first victim, he continued to deny abusing the second, as he did when he took the stand during his trial.  

Gregston called the jury “jaded” and said that because of his prior conviction, they would not consider any verdict other than guilty. 

Gregston, at the time, had asked for both a change of venue and the opportunity to take a polygraph, which he said were denied. 

He has 60 days to appeal the sentence. 

Gregston will be a very old man if he lives to serve the entirety of the sentences he received for abusing the two children, both of whom testified at trial. He must register as a sex offender for life, and – if ever released from prison – will be on parole for the reminder of his life, Judge Thompson said. ■