A Robstown man has been sentenced to 10 years of probation after pleading guilty to molesting a family member.

Russell "Rusty" Serna, 44, pleaded guilty in 94th District Court to one count of indecency with a child. Two other counts of indecency with a child were dismissed as part of the plea agreement reached in late November.

Serna was also fined $936.

Serna, of 1203 Baker St., was arrested June 16, 2006 after several reports surfaced of him harassing and stalking youths in Robstown.

A 13-year-old Robstown girl was interviewed by the Children's Advocacy Center after the girl reportedly told a teacher she wanted to kill herself due to unwanted sexual advances by a family member.

The girl said Serna had been touching her over her clothes on the buttocks, breasts and vaginal area for a year when they were alone in his vehicle or alone at his house.

The girl said in March 2006 that Serna first touched her about a year earlier as they drove to a restaurant and he fondled her breast. She said she told Serna to stop, but he continued.

The girl said the molestation began occurring more frequently when they were alone. She said she told her mother, but the girl said her mother did not seem to believe her.

The girl said the abuse continued for a year and most recently occurred in March 2006 when Serna entered her bedroom and hugged her. She said Serna asked about her day before stepping back and fondling her breasts and butt.

Detective Sgt. Enrique Paredez Jr. said he made contact with a Seale Junior High School counselor who informed him that the girl's attitude and academic performance changed about the time that the molestation began.

The girl told a teacher she no longer wished to live and that Serna was a "pervert" and she felt uncomfortable around him.

Police learned that Serna was banned from Robstown Independent School District property in November 2001 after several complaints about him surfaced.

School officials said Serna would hang around and observe girls working out while asking teachers personal questions.

Another girl complained about Serna patting her on the butt with football field markers.

Police said they would investigate any report of sexual abuse, even if the alleged events occurred some years ago.

"Anybody that has been sexually abused, report it, or tell someone," Paredez said.