Tarrant County sex offender gets life sentence after abusing 8-year-old

Posted Wednesday, Jan. 30, 2013  comments  Print Reprints

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FORT WORTH -- A convicted sex offender received an automatic life sentence after he was convicted on Tuesday of forcing an 8-year-old girl to have oral sex with him.

The girl was the daughter of an acquaintance of Jonathan Luther Nichols, 36, who in March 1995 was sentenced to seven years in prison by a Tarrant County jury for sexually assaulting an 11-year-old girl in the summer of 1994, according to court records.

The prior conviction triggered the automatic life sentence, a news release from the Tarrant County district attorney's office said. While the 8-year-old girl's mother was away from the house, Nichols forced her to give him oral sex, the release said.

Nichols threatened the child with removal from home and then threatened to harm her and her mother if she did not comply with his demands, according to the release.

The child's mother had a history with Child Protective Services because of her methamphetamine use, and in 2010, the agency removed the child from her home a third time and placed her with a family who later adopted her, the release said.

The girl told the adoptive family what Nichols had done, and then the family contacted Haltom City police, the release said. After a police investigation, Nichols was charged with the assault, the release said.

At the time he was charged, Nichols was serving a six-year sentence out of Johnson County handed down in 2009 for fraudulent use of identifying information, according to Texas Department of Criminal Justice records. In 2003, Nichols received a five-year prison sentence for assaulting a family member, prison records showed.

Mitch Mitchell, 817-390-7752

Twitter: @mitchmitchel3

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