Man charged with groping random woman in Riverton pleads not guilty to sexual assault

(Lander, Wyo.) – Jerald Leroy Friday, 51, of Riverton, pleaded not guilty this afternoon to Third Degree Sexual Assault in the Ninth District Court in Lander.

Friday is alleged to have uninvitedly groped a woman in Riverton last month. He is being held in the Fremont County Detention Center on a $15,000 cash or $25,000 surety bond. Third Degree Sexual Assault is a felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison.

Riverton Police Officer Ryan Wangberg wrote the affidavit in the case. In that court document, Wangberg said he was called on June 19 to the corner of South Major and West Main for a report of a sex offense. Upon arrival, the alleged victim, whose name is redacted in the document, reported that she was walking along the canal bank path to school when she crossed paths with a man later identified as Friday.

“(The victim) stated when she crossed paths with him, he stopped to talk with her,” the affidavit states. “Friday asked (her) where she was going, and began to tell her she was pretty. (She) stated that Friday asked if she wanted to be his girlfriend. She stated that he was acting very strange and that his request made her very uncomfortable.”

The affidavit then states that Friday began to hug, grab and poke her in an inappropriate manner. After she got away she waited until she was a safe distance before she called 911. Officers located Friday and then showed him to the victim, and she identified him as the man in question.

Friday’s trial has been tentatively set for Oct. 27.