UPDATE: Bismarck man accused of touching a 4-year-old enters Alford plea

BISMARCK, N.D. - UPDATE: Court documents show Michael Pickell, who is charged with the sexual assault of a child, has given an Alford plea.

The plea means he maintains his innocence but agrees the state has enough evidence to convict him.


ORIGINAL: The trial for a man accused of touching a minor inappropriately began Wednesday morning.

Forty-four-year-old Michael Pickell is charged with gross sexual imposition sexual contact, which is a class A felony.

Court documents say the 4-year-old reported the assault to her legal guardians.

The affidavit says Pickell admits letting the child swim in his pool and taking her to the bathroom to wash her off. Records say he told police the child had her clothes on the entire time and denies illegal sexual contact.

Jury selection took place Wednesday morning and opening statements are expected to begin Wednesday afternoon.