Man sentenced to 20 years for sexually assaulting teen in Appleton

OUTAGAMIE COUNTY, Wis. (WBAY) - A man has been sentenced to 20 years in prison for sexually assaulting a 15-year-old child in Outagamie County.

Joseph Newton was convicted of 2nd Degree Sexual Assault of a Child during a jury trial in December.

The investigation into Newton began in 2015. The Wisconsin Department of Justice - Division of Criminal Investigation identified Newton as a human trafficking suspect, according to Outagamie County District Attorney Melinda Tempelis.

Tempelis says investigators learned that Newton was suspected of trafficking and sexually assaulting seven women in Outagamie County, Brown County, and on the Menominee Indian Reservation.

The victim in the Outagamie County case was a 15-year-old runaway. She told investigators that Newton had repeatedly drugged and sexually assaulted her at an apartment in Appleton.

Newton also took "lewd" photographs of the girl and recorded one of the assaults, Tempelis says.

A warrant was issued for Newton's arrest in 2016. He fled to Canada. U.S. Marshals and the U.S. Department of Justice arranged to have him extradited back to the United States.

“The defendant in this case targeted and sexually assaulted a vulnerable, runaway child," Tempelis said. "The Outagamie County District Attorney’s Office, with our partners in law enforcement, remain firmly committed to pursuing and holding accountable those who victimize the most vulnerable among us who have suffered sexual abuse.”

On Feb. 11, Judge Vincent Biskupic sentenced Newton to 20 years in prison and 10 years on extended supervision.