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Ex-police sergeant indicted on child sex charges

Sheriff's office says additional victims identified


Photo Credit: COLUMBIA COUNTY JAIL PHOTO - BASKA

A former Vernonia police sergeant was indicted Thursday on three counts of first degree sexual abuse and one count of luring a minor.

Gene Baska, 62, was arrested Jan. 7, on charges that he lured a 13-year-old girl and attempted to have sex with the child, after authorities were alerted to a sexually explicity message he sent the girl.

An investigation into the charges is ongoing, but Columbia County Sheriff Jeff Dickerson stated in a news release that additional victims were identified.

"Two additional victims were identified," Dickerson said, noting they were 15 and 16 years old.

“Investigators believe more victims might still be out there and are requesting anyone with information to call the sheriff's recorded tip line at (503) 366-4698,” Dickerson stated in a news release.

Baska is not in custody but he is expected to appear in court in March on the charges filed.

Dickerson said the two additional victims contacted authorities during the course of the investigation.

He declined to comment on whether Baska communicated with them electronically.

After Baska's arrest, Vernonia Police Chief Michael Conner said his department received the initial report of Baska's conduct, but asked Columbia County Sheriff's Office to assist with the investigation because Baska is a former employee.

Conner also said Baska was well-known in the small community.


This story has been updated to reflect new information. JW_DISQUS_ADD_A_COMMENT