ASHEVILLE, NC (WSPA) – A Weaverville man pleaded guilty to First Degree Statutory Sex Offense, and First Degree Statutory Rape on Tuesday.
Alexander Nelson Richards, 41, of Clarks Chapel Extension had a sexual relationship with a 12-year-old girl from August 8 – 11, 2015, according to investigators.
He picked up the girl out of state after establishing an online relationship on Facebook and Skype for over a year, according to Buncombe Co. District Attorney Todd M. Williams.
Investigators say he took the girl from her home state, took her to Buncombe Co. and paid for a Greyhound bus ticket to take her back home.
The girl reported a pregnancy scare to her medical provider and told investigators she and Richards had sex at least 3 times at his home.
He will spend at least 15 and up to 23 years in prison.
“This defendant is the worst kind of online sexual predator – one who grooms children for sex – and is very deserving of the long prison term he received in court today,” Williams said.
The judge ordered Richards to maintain registration as a sex offender.