Austin man gets a decade of probation for criminal sexual conduct with a child

Published 4:46 pm Thursday, February 8, 2024

A man originally charged with three felonies for criminal sexual conduct involving a minor will spend the next 10 years on probation.

Rodolfo Morataya Lopez, 43, of Montevideo, was sentenced to a decade of supervised probation Thursday in Mower County District Court for second degree criminal sexual conduct with a child under 13. He was given credit for 187 days served.

Lopez will have to follow a number of conditions. Failure to do so could result in 36 months in prison.

Email newsletter signup

Two additional charges of first degree criminal sexual conduct – penetration of a child under 13 and first degree criminal sexual conduct-sexual contact with a child under 13 were dismissed.

Lopez initially pleaded not guilty to the charges, but amended his plea in November of last year as part of an Alford plea, which recognizes that while Lopez claims to be innocent it also acknowledges that there is enough evidence to convict.

Lopez was originally arrested and charged with the three counts in March of 2021.  According to court documents, Lopez was charged with assaulting a five-year-old girl, and police were first made aware of the assaults in January of 2021. 

Lopez denied the allegations and later fled Austin, failing to show up to an April 15, 2021 hearing. A warrant was issued that day.

Lopez was later arrested and booked into Mower County Jail on the afternoon of Aug. 12, 2023.

Lopez has also been fined $1,000.