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

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