A Blaine County jury began deliberations shortly after 11 a.m. on Thursday in a sex-crime case against a 45-year-old Bellevue man. A verdict had not been announced by the jury as of the Idaho Mountain Express press deadline on Thursday afternoon.
The trial started Monday in Blaine County 5th District Court for Marcelino B. Baeza, who was charged in a Blaine County grand jury indictment issued in July 2013 with two counts of lewd conduct with a child under 16, a crime punishable in Idaho by up to life in prison.
According to court records, Baeza is accused of felony sex crimes against a 5-year-old girl who is a relative. The crimes allegedly occurred at the girl’s home on North Third Avenue in Bellevue. Baeza has remained free since posting $35,000 bond in December 2013. He is represented by Hailey attorney Douglas Nelson.
Presiding over the trial is Judge Jonathan P. Brody, who normally serves in Minidoka County but was assigned to the case after Blaine County Judge Robert J. Elgee disqualified himself, presumably because of information regarding the case that he became aware of when an earlier trial for Baeza was aborted in April.