UPDATE: Molina Sentenced On Sex Abuse Charges - News and Weather For The Quad Cities -

UPDATE: Molina Sentenced On Sex Abuse Charges

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Update 1-9-14: Anthony Molina has been sentenced to six years prison. In October, he pleaded guilty to sexual misconduct and aggravated criminal sexual abuse under an Alford plea, which means he does not admit guilt. The other charges were dropped.

Original 5-31-13:

34-year old Anthony Molina was in court Thursday, facing seven felony charges including predatory sexual assault of a child and aggravated criminal sexual abuse. He pled not guilty to every single one.  

Molina is accused of sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl. He was arrested last week after the accusations came to light. 

Molina is a well-known baseball player and coached a 14-year old youth baseball team in the QCA community. He played for University Of Evansville, but infamously took a baseball to the face in 1999, ending his career. 

Since his arrest, he's been suspended from the team he coached. Now attorneys for Molina and the state are preparing for trial.

"It was a plea of not guilty to all seven counts, and we requested a jury trial so we're going to take this all the way through a jury trial so the reason we do that is so he can have a trial by his peers and make the state prove their case beyond a reasonable doubt," Molina's Attorney Steve Hanna says. 

Molina has previous domestic battery charges and an order of protection; the charges were dropped in both cases. 

A rep for the league Molina's team plays in says teams are not required to conduct background checks, but some do so on a team-by-team basis; Molina's team did not.  

"I think a lot of it's taken for granted," Lt. John Hitchcock with Moline Police says, "There's really no statute requiring private organizations to do background checks." 

When it comes to checking into someone's background, the law doesn't cover much. School districts, daycares, and healthcare providers are all required to get background checks done, but with everyone else, it's up to them.  

"Little league organizations, soccer leagues, youth leagues are not required," Hitchcock says, "It's the responsibility of the league or the parent." 

Some private organizations do them anyway, but it often boils down to cost.  

"Cost is based on the number of searches and the number of jurisdictions, but you can get a pretty comprehensive background on somebody in the $20-40 range," Jim Sweeney says. Sweeney has been in the background check business for over 20 years and oversees his company, InquireHire, which does comprehensive checks for employees and private entities. 

There are several private services in the area you can turn to do this work for you, but there are ways to do it on your own too. Sites like Judici or Iowa Courts Online, and sex offender registries will let you do a basic criminal history search and are all available to the public for free, but there are setbacks. 

"You can do some searches yourself," Sweeney says, "The problem is how do you know what you're seeing, how do you interpret it?" 

Online searches will turn up old court cases, or private services will dig for you for a price. Experts say it's a small price to pay for a piece of mind.  

"In reality the cost for backgrounds is so minor compared to what you're going to incur in bad publicity or just lawsuit or anything that gets you in trouble," Sweeney says.

"None of us can predict human behavior," he says, "Although we know somebody, we don't always know what they're doing behind closed doors or what they're capable of doing." 

For more information on getting a background check, see the links below:

Scott County Sheriff's Dept: http://bit.ly/KNQJ66

Iowa Department of Criminal Investigations: http://bit.ly/JxgBk7

Illinois State Police: http://bit.ly/L1JA0p

IL Regional Office of Education: http://bit.ly/K0HAnI

FBI: http://1.usa.gov/r80oSx

*Most services require appointments, please call ahead to schedule.


Private Services:

InquireHire: http://www.inquirehire.com/

Per Mar: http://www.permarsecurity.com/background-investigation/

Accurate Biometrics: http://bit.ly/Md8WxM

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