Whitmer man charged with sexual assault

A Whitmer man was arrested Monday for allegedly sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl and threatening to kill her if she told anyone.

Dennis A. Arbaugh, 48, was charged with one felony count of sexual assault in the first degree. Randolph County Magistrate Rob Elbon set bond at $100,000 cash only. Arbaugh was being held in the Tygart Valley Regional Jail as of presstime.

According to the criminal complaint, West Virginia State Trooper C.E. Elliott spoke with the alleged victim at Davis Memorial Hospital in Elkins on June 7. The girl allegedly told Elliott that Arbaugh had taken her to a bedroom in his home and performed sexual acts on her. She said that Arbaugh “told her that he would kill her if she ever told anyone about what they did,” Elliott wrote.

In the complaint, Elliott wrote that the girl told him “she had asked (Arbaugh) to stop multiple times but when she would attempt to leave the suspect would hold her down and threaten to kill her.”

On June 17, Elliott witnessed a forensic interview of the alleged victim at the Randolph County Child Advocacy Center, according to the criminal complaint. The girl was asked to describe Arbaugh’s bedroom and she did so, saying that it contained several firearms, Elliott wrote.

The girl described the alleged incident in detail, saying she “was kicking and pushing to get away but the accused grabbed her and said if she moved he would shoot her with his pistol,” Elliott wrote. The girl described the pistol, which she said was small with a white handle, and said she had seen it on a bedroom dresser, according to the complaint.

Elliott wrote that the girl said “the reason she did not tell anyone was because she was scared the accused was going to kill her.”

Also on June 17, Elliott witnessed a forensic interview of a 9-year-old boy who had allegedly gone to Arbaugh’s house with the girl to “ride the four-wheelers.” According to the complaint, the boy said Arbaugh asked the girl to go inside the home while the boy stayed outside “to get the four-wheelers out.” The boy said he then went inside to ask for help with the ATVs, and heard the girl saying, “Quit, that hurts.” The boy said he then left the residence, according to the complaint.

Among the terms of bail is the condition that Arbaugh have no direct or indirect physical or verbal contact with the alleged victim.