Tribal Government & News

Sifuentez case still awaiting trial date

08.29.2019 Danielle Frost Public safety

By Danielle Frost

Smoke Signals staff writer

SALEM – Former longtime Tribal Security employee Juan Jose Sifuentez, 55, remains out of jail on bail while awaiting trial on first-degree sexual abuse charges.

A trial date has not been set by Marion County Circuit Court.

Sifuentez, 55, was arrested by the Salem Police Department on Thursday, Feb. 7, and charged with two counts of first-degree sexual abuse. He remained in the Marion County Jail until mid-April when he posted the $8,300 security release.

Sifuentez worked for the Tribe as Security Supervisor in the Engineering & Public Works Department. Before that, he served as an employee of two previous contracted security firms, ProStar and Advance.

According to amended charging documents on file with Marion County Circuit Court, Sifuentez is accused of two incidents of alleged inappropriate touching of a girl younger than 14. The alleged incidents occurred in August 2014.

He is being represented by Salem attorney Martin Habekost, who did not return a phone call or e-mail requesting comment on the case.

According to Oregon law, first-degree sexual abuse occurs if the victim is younger than 14 and is subjected to force or is incapable of consent because he or she is mentally defective or incapacitated or physically helpless. It is a class B felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison with a mandatory minimum of 6 years and 3 months.

Marion County District Attorney Ashley R. Cadotte is prosecuting the case.

Sifuentez’s next court appearance is scheduled for Wednesday, Sept. 25.