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Warrant issued for man accused of molesting 10-year-old in rural Blue Earth County

(Mankato, MN) – Police are looking for a man accused of molesting a young girl while he lived with her family.

A warrant has been issued for Ronald Kalani Robello, Jr., 41, who is believed to have fled to California after he was interviewed by police for the sexual assault of a 10-year-old.

According to the criminal complaint, Robello lived at the family’s farm in rural Blue Earth County during spring 2019.  The girl told investigators she fell asleep with one of her kittens on the second level of a granary when she woke up to Robello laying next to her.  He then molested her, according to the complaint, and threatened to hurt her family if she told anyone.

In a second incident described to police by the victim, Robello placed her on a couch and laid on top of her until an adult walked by and yelled at him.

In an interview with police, Robello denied molesting the girl.  He admitted to tickling and playing with the victim, but said the contact wasn’t sexual.  “You know, I never touched her vagina and I never actually tried to touch her vagina,” Robella said in the interview.  “I can’t understand why I feel guilty or I think I’m guilty of doing this when I know I’m not.  I don’t understand it.”

Robello told police he could have possibly touched the girl’s genitals because he “tickles her all the time.”

According to the complaint, Robello left Minnesota shortly after the interview and is believed to be in California.  He has previous convictions in California for obstructing the legal process and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

A warrant has been issued for his arrest.  He’s been charged with four counts of criminal sexual conduct.

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