85 Year Old Local Man Sentenced to 15 Years for CSC Crimes

Joseph Aloysius Nolan JR, age 85 of Sault Ste. Marie, Michigan, previously plead guilty
to three felony counts including one count of Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Second Degree (a
15-year felony) and two additional counts of Criminal Sexual Conduct in the Fourth Degree. He
was sentenced today, July 2, 2024, by the Honorable James P. Lambros of the 50 th Circuit Court
to serve 71 months to 15 years in the Michigan Department of Corrections, which was the
maximum allowable sentence under the Michigan Sentencing Guidelines. After 71 months, the
Michigan Parole Board will then determine whether they will grant him a parole. Ultimately the
parole board can incarcerate him in the Michigan Department of Corrections for up to 15 years.

This case was handled by Chief Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Kristin M. Giommi with
the assistance of Detective/Sergeant Kristin Autore from the Sault Ste. Marie Police Department.
Detective Autore started an investigation into Mr. Nolan after receiving a tip from a mandatory
reporter. The Victim ultimately came forward and disclosed to Detective Autore that her
grandfather had been sexually molesting her from the time she was 10 years old up until she was
a junior in high school.

At the sentencing hearing, Ms. Giommi told the Court of the extreme predatory conduct
that was exhibited by Mr. Nolan over the years- grooming the victim from the time she was
young with gifts and money, and concocting ways to ensure that she was alone with him in order
to carry out his assaults, all while persuading her to keep quiet. It wasn’t until the impact of what
was happening got to the point that the victim’s mental health had deteriorated significantly that
a disclosure was finally made to a counsellor. It took incredible courage for the victim to not only
make these disclosures, but to endure the four-year court process that followed. The Court heard
from the victim herself, who showed tremendous strength as she disclosed the significant trauma
Mr. Nolan had caused, and that the simple “I am sorry for my actions” statement Mr. Nolan made
to the Court would never be enough.

In rendering this sentence, Judge Lambros highlighted the horrific effects that these
horrific behaviors have on victims, and that despite the fact that he was sentencing Mr. Nolan to
the maximum he was permitted by the sentencing guidelines, he acknowledged that this was a
life sentence for this victim, who will forever have to battle with the fact that a trusted family
member, one who was responsible for taking care of her, chose to sexually violate her for years.
According to Prosecutor Robert L. Stratton III, “this is another example of a child victim
getting justice in a delayed report case. The protection of our children is one of the most
important roles society faces, and this office, though collaborative work with our law
enforcement partners, will continue to do everything in their power to send a clear message that
these horrific acts will not be tolerated. Too often we see the damaging aftermath of victims of
these crimes, and its cases like these that we hope helps change the projection of their healing
journey.” “Furthermore, predators should know that there is nowhere to hide, as our children
will be protected and we will hold you accountable.”

Sault Ste. Marie Police Chief Wesley Bierling echoed the sentiment and further stated,
“Detective Autore did an exemplary job of taking a tip and working with the victim to build a
rapport to the point that she was comfortable making a disclosure, and because of the victim’s
courage, another predator is off the street.”

Robert L. Stratton
Chippewa County Prosecuting Attorney

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