ONLY ON CVP: A man who admitted molesting a 15-year-old Midland Park girl and her cousin was freed after spending 14 months behind bars after judges in two counties suspended sentences against him.
Gene W. Britton Jr., 32, last year pleaded guilty in both Bergen and Passaic counties to sexually assaulting the girls, agreeing to serve three years in state prison for touching the girls under their clothing.
However, judges in both counties suspended the sentences on Monday to allow for “sex offender-specific” therapy.
Britton already had a lengthy adult and juvenile criminal record dating back to 1998, Superior Court Judge Edward A. Jerejian said in Hackensack.
And although there was a risk of re-offending, the judge said, Britton didn’t qualify for institutionalization as a “repetitive and compulsive” sex offender at the Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center in Avenel.
He will remain under Megan’s Law supervision for life, Jerejian said. If he violates the terms of his release, he’ll be sent to prison for up to five years.
Britton originally was charged with aggravated sexual assault and impairing or debauching the morals of a minor. That was pleaded to a single count of sexual assault in each county.
The sentencings were postponed so that a complete evaluation could be done at Avenel. Both were then held on Monday.
Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Kristin DeMarco said the family of the victims was satisfied with the outcome and didn’t want to speak in court.
Britton has more than 365 days of jail credit since being arrested in February 2013, which DeMarco said is about the amount of time he would have served under the combined three-year sentence.
STORY / PHOTOS: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter