Montana Assisted Living Facility Worker Pleads Guilty to Raping Disabled Resident

A former assisted living facility employee accused of raping a resident in 2021 pleaded guilty to a single count of sexual intercourse without consent on June 29.

James Frederick McLeod, 63, of Kalispell entered an Alford plea in Flathead County District Court after striking a deal with prosecutors. Under an Alford plea, McLeod maintains his innocence but acknowledges a jury would likely convict him based on the evidence.

McLeod Told Cops He Wanted to See If He Could Get Aroused

James Frederick McLeod
James Frederick McLeod Twitter

Authorities began investigating McLeod after receiving a report of sexual assault from a Columbia Falls assisted living facility in October 2021. The resident, who is developmentally disabled and autistic, according to court documents, told Columbia Falls Police officers that McLeod, who was an employee at the facility, assaulted her in her room.

According to court documents, he began by rubbing her shoulders and eventually groped her butt and crotch before engaging in sexual intercourse with the victim without her consent. The victim told officers she was terrified during the ordeal. Under questioning, McLeod allegedly admitted groping the victim, telling officers he wanted to see if he could get aroused.

McLeod Faces 20 Years in Prison

Judge Robert Allison accepted McLeod's plea during a short hearing last week. The agreement reached by McLeod's defense attorneys and prosecutors is a split recommendation, meaning both sides will ask the judge for different penalties during his sentencing.

A copy of the plea deal filed in district court indicates that prosecutors will seek 20 years in Montana State Prison with 13 suspended. Under their recommendation, he will not be eligible for release until completing a sex offender program. McLeod's sentencing has been set for set for Aug. 11.

Last August, a British care facility worker was sentenced to six years in prison after he was caught sexually assaulting a female patient whenever she suffered a seizure, as previously reported.