Providence man held on sexual assault, drug charges

A Providence man was charged Monday with sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl and trying to hide drugs on her.

State police said the teen was in the car with 22-year-old Joshua Morales when he was pulled over for erratic driving on the highway Saturday night.

The trooper smelled burnt marijuana and noticed a 10-inch sword in a sheath in the back seat. Other troopers arrived to help determine what was going on.

"Troopers arrived, when they separated the male from the female, the female admitted to troopers that she was scared for her safety because of the knife in the back seat," Lt. Col. Michael Winquist said.

Police said the girl was so scared of Morales that she tried to flee on the highway when troopers tried to bring her to a cruiser to be questioned.

The teen eventually told investigators that Morales had sexually assaulted her, and she handed them pills of the club drug Molly that were in her shirt. She said Morales put them there as they were being pulled over and that he told her to lie about her age.

After his arraignment, Morales' mother, Adela Guillermo, denied her son did anything wrong and accused the teen of lying.

"All of this is lies," Guillermo said. "She's destroying my son's life, you know, and everything he's worked so hard for over an allegation that's untrue."

"We have no reason to believe that she did not tell us the truth. We feel she's credible, and that's why we brought the charges," Winquist said.

Guillermo said the girl used to date her other son and had texted Morales for a ride to go see him. The girl told police that's where she thought she was going when she got picked up and was allegedly assaulted.

Police released the girl to her mother.

A search of Morales' home turned up more of the drug, a digital scale and other distribution paraphernalia.

Morales was charged with possession of a controlled substance, second-degree sexual assault, enticement of a child, contributing to the delinquency of a minor, and several motor vehicle violations.

He was ordered held at the ACI in Cranston.