Nile W. Zimmerman, 83 of Mooreland, has been sentenced to 10 years in the Indiana Dept. of Corrections three years after he was first arrested for child molestation.
The abuse took place from 2014 to 2017.
Zimmerman was arrested April 2, 2018 on two counts of Level 4 felony child molestation and one count of Level 6 felony battery by bodily waste.
During a December 2017 interview with investigators, Zimmerman said he didn’t know why he was being questioned and that no one told him anything about the accusations made against him.
When asked if he had ever touched the child’s genitalia, Zimmerman asked his attorney, “What do I say?” and “Deny what?”
The attorney reportedly told investigators at the time his client “appeared confused” and wouldn’t answer the question.
According to court records, Zimmerman’s attorney filed a motion a year later for Zimmerman to undergo a psychiatric exam to determine if he was competent to stand trial. The court received a doctor’s report on Zimmerman in June 2019 and a psychiatrist’s report on him in July 2019. A mental health examination on Zimmerman was filed with the court in September 2019.
Zimmerman had a competency hearing Jan. 10, 2020.
Judge Kit Crane ruled Jan. 11, 2020, that Zimmerman was competent to stand trial for the felony charges.
Court records show the case was continued at least seven times after the ruling.
The court agreed on May 26, 2021, to dismiss the Level 6 felony charge without prejudice. That same day, Zimmerman’s jury trial was set for July 12.
According to court records, Zimmerman filed a guilty plea on the morning of July 12, before the jury trial started.
Zimmerman pleaded “guilty but mentally ill” to one county of the Level 4 felony child molestation. Judge Crane accepted the plea and dismissed the remaining charge.
On Sept. 7, Zimmerman was sentenced to 10 years in the Indiana Dept. of Correction, with two years suspended and two years of formal probation on his release. He received two days credit for time served.
Zimmerman was also ordered to pay court costs, a child abuse prevention fee and a sexual assault victims assistance fee, totaling $785.