Molestation suspect was previously investigated by the FBI

An Oak Harbor man who was investigated by the FBI years ago for allegedly sexually assaulting children was recently charged with trying to molest an Oak Harbor girl, according to court documents.

Douglas R. Duenwald, 69, plea-ded not guilty in Island County Superior Court Oct. 23 to attempted child molestation in the first degree and unlawful possession of a firearm.

Duenwald was released from jail after he posted a property bail bond in October.

Detective Jonathon Villanueva with the Island County Sheriff’s Office started investigating the case in September after a woman reported that her 4-year-old daughter inadvertently disclosed allegations that Duenwald molested her, according to the detective’s report.

Duenwald was a family friend and the husband of the family’s babysitter.

Villanueva discovered that similar allegations were previously made against Duenwald.

In 1995, police responded to a report that Duenwald was with a group of underage girls at a Whidbey beach and was taking photos of one of them in “questionable positions,” the report states.

The five girls were headed with Duenwald to his van when the police intervened.

Duenwald allegedly told a detective that he had “uncontrollable urges to sexually exploit pre-pubescent females,” the report states.

In search of his house, investigators found a duffel bag containing rope, ladies’ undergarments and a mask with no eye holes.

Prosecutors charged Duenwald in Island County Superior Court in 1996 with communicating with a minor for immoral purposes.

Duenwald received a deferred prosecution, meaning the charge was dismissed after he completed the terms of the deal.

Duenwald was assessed by a clinical psychologist at the time who concluded that Duenwald’s “history is one of the most perverse this Evaluator has encountered in 15 years of working nearly full-time with this population.”

The psychologist wrote that Duenwald’s contact with children should be “severely restricted and closely watched.”

In 1997, the prosecutor’s office received a letter from the U.S. Department of Justice saying that the FBI was investigating allegations that Duenwald sexually abused children in Hawaii.

Duenwald was indicted in 2001 on two counts of first-degree sexual assault stemming from allegations that Duenwald “had sexually molested as many as six children ranging from two to six years old in an Army Medical Center housing complex.”

His wife at the time was stationed in Hawaii.

In that case, Duenwald was convicted of assault in the second degree; the charge was not a sex crime so he didn’t need to register as a sex offender.

If convicted of the charges against him, Duenwald would face from 42.75 to 56.25 months in prison under the standard sentence range.

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