$500,000 bail set for molesting suspect

A 34-year-old Navy man accused of child molestation is being held on $500,000 bail, an unusually high amount for Island County Superior Court.

On Feb. 5, Oak Harbor police received a report from Children and Family Services that an 8-year-old child had disclosed that Ronnie T. Johnston had repeatedly molested her, according to an officer’s report.

The child’s mother reported that her 14-year-old daughter had disclosed similar sexual abuse, the report states.

Detectives interviewed the two children, who said the abuse started when the family moved to Oak Harbor about six months prior. One of the children said Johnston told her not to tell anyone because he could get into a lot of trouble, the report states.

The children’s mother said Johnston had previously said multiple times that he was going to “snap” and take out as many people as he could, the detective wrote. The report indicates that he owns nine guns.

Before he was arrested, Johnston’s Navy command escorted him out of the house and told him not to contact the family, but he called them that night, the report states.

On Feb. 7, a judge found probable cause exists to believe Johnston committed three counts of child molestation in the first degree and two counts of child molestation in the third degree.

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