CODY, Wyo. (AP) - A Montana man charged with kidnapping and sexually assaulting an 11-year-old Cody girl has pleaded not guilty. Jesse P. Speer appeared Friday before District Judge Steven Cranfill in Cody. The Powell Tribune reports Speer only answered routine questions, responding that he understood his constitutional rights.
Speer's court-appointed attorney, Travis Smith of Cody, entered not guilty pleas to three felony charges for Speer. Cranfill didn't set a trial date Friday. Speer has a right to be tried within 180 days. Authorities charge that Speer, of Belgrade, Mont., abducted the girl in Cody in early October. They say he sexually assaulted her before releasing her. Hunters later found her and took her to safety. Court records filed in Montana say Speer told arresting officers he abducted and assaulted the girl.