McCandless ice cream shop owner ordered to trial on child sex assault charges

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The owner of a McCandless ice cream shop charged with sexually assaulting two sisters over several years was held for court today on all but two counts.

Judge William Wagner ordered David Higginbotham, 61, to stand trial on charges including aggravated indecent assault of a child, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and statutory sexual assault and other crimes.

A count each of the latter two charges, both felonies, were dismissed.

His attorney, Phil DiLucente, called the allegations "outlandish" and said his client claims he is innocent.

"Needless to say, we're going to continue to investigate and defend all the charges filed against him," he said.

The girls told Northern Regional police last month that Mr. Higginbotham inappropriately touched them dozens of times over the past five years, often at his Marshall home, according to an affidavit.

Northern Regional police began investigating after the older girl, who recently turned 13, “wrote a note sort of itemizing the assaults and turned that over to her parents,” Chief Robert Amann said then.

He said the girl’s parents contacted police that evening.

Mr. Higginbotham was released last month from the Allegheny County Jail on $50,000 bail. He owns Handel’s ice cream shop in McCandless Crossing.


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