By Nicholas Grube

Triplicate staff writer

A thrice convicted child molester will be released back into Crescent City unless the Del Norte County District Attorney's Office can prove that he still poses a significant threat to the community.

Cornelius J. Boyle is scheduled to appear in court next week for a probable cause hearing to determine if he is a violent sexual predator.

andquot;If he's deemed to be a sexually violent predator, we can hold him longer,andquot; Deputy District Attorney Kelly Neel said.

The upshot: The D.A.'s Office must show he'll probably recommit his previuos crimes. If they're successful, Boyle would have to serve an additional two years in prison.

Boyle was convicted three seperate times of sexual battery while living in Virginia. The first time was in 1984 and the last time was 2004. His victims were a 7-year-old boy, an 8-year-old girl and a 10-year-old girl.

After the third incident in 2004, Boyle fled Virginia and moved to Crescent City where he was arrested for failing to register as a sex offender, possession of child pornography and for being a fugitive of the law.

But those three children are not Boyle's only victims, according to court documents. He claimed that he has had numerous sexual encounters with children, both male and female, but he just wasn't caught.

andquot;Boyle is like the historical average (child molester),andquot; District Attorney Mike Riese said. andquot;By the time we catch him, he has 30 to 40 victims behind him.andquot;

Boyle is considered a pedophile, according to one psychological evaluation.

andquot;A true pedophile doesn't believe what they do is wrongandquot; and the reason Boyle needs to remain in prison, Riese said.

But, Riese said, andquot;He's nowhere near the worst that I've got here.andquot;