WAYNESVILLE – A 34-year-old Waynesville man was sentenced today in Haywood County Superior Court on four felony convictions.
Larry Dean Mintz was convicted in January of two counts of first-degree sexual offense with a child and two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child. Superior Court Judge Mark Powell sentenced Mintz to serve 50-61 years in prison, according to District Attorney Michael Bonfoey's office.
The crimes were committed in 2002. The girls—who were not related to each other or Mintz—were 8 and 10 when Mintz molested them, the District Attorney's office said. The victims did not report the crimes until January 2005. Mintz was arrested in May 2005, but was not tried until this year because he escaped from jail and fled the jurisdiction.
“My assistant district attorneys, Jim Moore and Reid Brown, did an excellent job in trying this cases and obtaining the jury verdicts of guilty,” Bonfoey said in a statement. “Moore and Brown spent many hours preparing the case and working with the young victims in order to present this case to a Haywood county jury and obtain justice for the victims of these terrible crimes.
“I commend the Haywood County Sheriff’s Office and Det. Heidi Van Dine for the excellent investigation of this case. The evidence against Mr. Mintz was stale when she took the first report. Detective Van Dine rolled up her sleeves and went to wok to find all of the facts possible about this crime. Her efforts resulted in an excellent investigation and subsequent conviction. Sexual predators and child molesters need to realize that the Haywood County Sheriff’s Office will aggressively investigate and the District Attorney’s Office will aggressively prosecute these crimes in order to obtain justice for these helpless victims.”