Man pleads not guilty to August sexual batteries

File photo

SUBLETTE COUNTY – A man accused of fondling and sexually touching a sleeping woman as she camped during last summer’s Sailing Regatta appeared in Sublette County Circuit Court on Monday.

Gavin A. Respini, of Las Vegas, Nevada, was charged with two counts of sexual battery on Aug. 13-14, 2022, after DNA tests from the alleged victim matched ones from Respini, according to Detective Lance Gehlhausen’s affidavit.

Respini pleaded not guilty and Circuit Court Judge John LaBuda released him on his own recognizance. Deputy county attorney Damien Di Bernardo said he had no problem with the judge overseeing the case with attorney Rives White, LaBuda’s former associate, representing the client.

Both misdemeanors have maximum sentences of one year in jail and or $1,000 fine.

Just after midnight on Aug. 14 Sublette County deputies responded to a call near Lakeside Lodge’s camping area for the Fremont Lake Sailing Regatta crews and friends.

The woman, camped in her sleeping bag near friends, said a man came over to her and she kept her eyes closed until he began fondling her. Then she screamed and the man took off, the affidavit says. Friends chased the man, later identified as Respini. His hands were swabbed for DNA and the match was reported to Gehlhausen on Feb. 3.