FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – Thomas Carboni, 56, of Fort Wayne, pleaded guilty to molesting his young granddaughter between March 2011 and May 2013. He will now serve four years of probation instead of serving eight years in prison due to a plea deal given to him by the prosecutor.
The child’s mother realized one night that her daughter looked scared, according to the probable cause affidavit. The mother asked what was wrong, and the daughter said she didn’t want to get in trouble, but said Carboni had been touching her. The mother reported to police that her daughter, 5, had a urinary tract and yeast infection prior to her coming forward, according to court documents.
He was arrested and charged with six counts of child molestation in August 2013. He was facing eight years in prison, the maximum sentence given for a charge of child molestation, a Class C felony. In the probable cause affidavit, Carboni denied the allegations during a police interview. He then requested a lawyer and wanted to take lie detector test. He never took the lie detector test.
Last month, the prosecutor gave Carboni a plea deal. In the deal, he would take four years of probation instead of going to prison. He accepted it.
“The most important thing on a child molestation is looking at what will the impact be on the child,” said Michael McAlexander, Allen County deputy prosecutor.
McAlexander said these types of cases are hit or miss in court. Prosecutors in these cases think about the victim and don’t want to re-traumatize them by having them face the suspect in court. He said sometimes the victim is the only evidence and witness for the case.
“We have had situations where people freeze and they just can’t answer a single question on the witness stand,” said McAlexander.
McAlexander told NewsChannel 15 that the plea deal was discussed with the child’s mother before it was put on the table. He said he described the pros and cons of the plea agreement. After discussing it, the mother agreed to offer the plea deal to Carboni.
McAlexander said Carboni doesn’t have any proper felonies or convictions.
Carboni will now have to register as a sex offender.