Shrubs grow outside of the Kenai Courthouse on Monday, July 3, 2023, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)

Shrubs grow outside of the Kenai Courthouse on Monday, July 3, 2023, in Kenai, Alaska. (Ashlyn O’Hara/Peninsula Clarion)

Sterling resident found guilty of felony sexual offense

Kelly David Crane faces a presumptive sentence of 25 to 35 years

Sterling resident Kelly David Crane, 61, was found guilty by a Kenai jury last week of four counts of felony sexual offenses.

According to a press release from the Department of Law, Crane, was found guilty of one count of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor, one count of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor and two counts of second-degree attempted sexual abuse of a minor for crimes committed in the summer and fall of 2019.

According to a August 2021 dispatch by Alaska State Troopers, a report was made on Sept. 27, 2019, to the Soldotna General Investigative Unit detailing “possible sexual abuse of a minor.” Investigation revealed multiple minor victims, and Crane was identified as a suspect, but “it was learned he had fled Alaska to California.”

On Aug. 20, 2021, approaching two years after the original report, “Alaska State Troopers learned Crane had returned to Alaska,” the dispatch says. He was arrested on three counts of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor and two counts of attempted second-degree sexual abuse of a minor and taken to Wildwood Pretrial Facility.

The trial, according to the release, lasted three weeks. Fifteen witnesses were heard across 15 days followed by three days of deliberation by the jury. Crane was found guilty on Thursday, Oct. 26.

Crane will not be sentenced until a hearing on April 5, the release says. He faces “a presumptive sentence of 25 to 35 years” for the first-degree charge, and a maximum sentence of 99 years for each of the four convictions.

Reach reporter Jake Dye at jacob.dye@peninsulaclarion.com.

More in News

Erosion of the Kenai bluff near the Kenai Senior Center. (Photo by Aidan Curtin courtesy Scott Curtin)
Ribbon-cutting for bluff stabilization project set for June 10

The bluff has been eroding at a rate of around 3 feet per year

A bag of freshly dug razor clams is held aloft at the Ninilchik Beach in Ninilchik, Alaska, on Saturday, July 1, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
No clamming in Ninilchik or Clam Gulch this year

Adult abundance “well below” fishery thresholds on both beaches

Poppies are affixed to wreaths during a Memorial Day ceremony at Leif Hanson Memorial Park in Kenai on Monday. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Remembering the sacrifices of the fallen

Speakers ask community to be inspired through sacrifice of service members

A fallen tree reaches onto Kalifornsky Beach Road in Soldotna, Alaska, as cars drive by on Friday, Sept. 1, 2023. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Grants, borough to support HEA effort to mitigate dangerous trees

HEA will have permission to enter borough land and the borough’s right of way

Assembly President Brent Johnson asks questions of representatives of the Kenai Peninsula Borough School District during a joint work session of the School Board and Kenai Peninsula Borough Assembly in Soldotna, Alaska, on Tuesday, April 2, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Borough to enter contract for asbestos flooring abatement in 3 central peninsula schools

The work will be done at Kenai Central High, Kenai Alternative High and Sterling Elementary schools

Kenai Central High School stands under clear skies in Kenai, Alaska, on Thursday, May 23, 2024. (Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion)
Borough approves contract for KCHS parking lot rehabilitation

Soldotna-based Foster Construction will be awarded the bid of $648,997 to complete the project

Central Peninsula Hospital is seen in Soldotna on Wednesday, Oct. 13, 2021. (Camille Botello/Peninsula Clarion)
Central Peninsula Hospital to host Cancer Survivor’s Day event

The event will take place Sunday, June 2 from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m.

Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion
Rep. Ben Carpenter, R-Nikiski, speaks to the joint Soldotna and Kenai chambers of commerce at the Soldotna Regional Sports Complex on Wednesday.
Carpenter gives wrap up on session as he nears end of House term

Carpenter is seeking election to state Senate District D

(from left to right) Jachin Sanchez, Carter Lemons, Rowan Mahoney, Adelyn McCorison and Taylor Rickard graduated from Ninilchik School on Monday, May 13, 2024 in Ninilchik, Alaska. Photo provided by Mattea Peters-Williamson
Ninilchik graduates 5 in 2024 commencement

The school held the ceremony Monday, May 13

Most Read