Couple face trial on sex counts

Wednesday, September 20th 2000, 12:00 am
By: News On 6

TULSA, Okla. (AP) -- A judge has ordered a Tulsa woman and her ex-boyfriend to stand trial on 14 felony charges that accuse them of engaging in multiple sex acts with the woman's preteen son.

Tulsa County Special Judge Kyle Haskins on Tuesday ordered Catherine A. Nicholson and Loyd "Buster" Dowler held on 13 counts of sexually abusing a boy who is now 12 years old. Nicholson, 41, and Dowler, 53, also face a count of causing a minor to participate in a lewd videotape.

Each sex-abuse allegation carries a maximum possible sentence of life in prison.

The only witness at Tuesday's preliminary hearing was the alleged victim, who indicated that he was 8 years old when the defendants "decided to teach me about sex."

Nicholson and Dowler, who were then "boyfriend-girlfriend," went to a park and "showed me what it was by stripping in the middle of the car" and having sex in his presence, the boy said.

Later in 1996, the defendants had sex again while he was present at his mother's apartment, and they also had him engage in sex with his mother, he said. He said that when he was about 10 years old, Dowler videotaped him having sex with his mother.

The boy said that while Nicholson would "sit around" in the apartment, he and Dowler engaged in oral sex at least two or three times.

When asked by Assistant District Attorney Eric Jordan if he wanted "to do these things," the boy replied, "Not really." The boy now lives in Muskogee with a grandmother.

Tulsa police launched an investigation in July after videotaped evidence was delivered anonymously to Police Chief Ron Palmer and to the Department of Human Services, depicting sex acts between a woman and a boy who were identified as Nicholson and her son.

Haskins and attorneys watched a nine-minute videotape -- submitted as evidence by Jordan -- in the judge's chambers Tuesday.

Court officials indicated that acts depicted on that tape support seven sex-abuse counts.