WAKEFIELD, Neb. -- A Wakefield man has been arrested on suspicion of sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl at a park earlier this year.
Jose Gallardo, 52, is being held in the Dixon County Jail on a $300,000 bond after his arrest Friday on charges of kidnapping, first-degree false imprisonment, terroristic threats, third-degree sexual assault of a child and child abuse.
The Dixon County Sheriff's Office began an investigation Nov. 24 after receiving a complaint from Gallardo's co-worker, who told authorities that Gallardo had confided in him about the incident.
In an affidavit filed in Dixon County Court, Deputy Donavon Bjorklund said that he and another deputy met with the alleged female victim, who was later interviewed at Mercy Child Advocacy Center in Sioux City.
According to the affidavit, the girl told the interviewer that sometime in late May or early June she was drinking from the water fountain in Graves Park in Wakefield when Gallardo grabbed her by the arm, put his hand over her mouth and told her not to scream or he would hurt her family.
The girl told the interviewer that Gallardo led her to his pickup truck and drove her to a corner of the park, pulled her from the pickup and took her behind a concrete wall, again telling her not to scream or he would hurt her family. According to the affidavit, Gallardo then touched the girl under her clothes until a car driving toward them startled Gallardo, and the girl was able to run away.
The girl did not tell anyone about the incident because she was afraid Gallardo would hurt her family, the affidavit said.