Jury sends Spokane molester to prison

SPOKANE — A Spokane jury is sending a convicted child molester back to prison, likely for the rest of his life.

Richard Payne, 56, showed little emotion Tuesday as jurors announced three guilty verdicts.

The Spokesman-Review said Payne was convicted of touching a 5-year-old girl inappropriately on two occasions at a video arcade in the NorthTown Mall in June 2012. He was also convicted Tuesday for exposing himself to the girl.

The conviction classifies Payne as a “persistent offender” under Washington law, due to a previous child molestation conviction in 2001. The state mandates a life sentence without parole for such offenders.

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