A Nome man is being charged with three counts of sexual abuse of a minor, including one count in the first degree, kidnapping, and assault in the fourth degree. The charges against 61-year-old Zenon Habros of Nome span a period of ten years, referring back to incidents from the year 2010.
These allegations against Habros came from a minor who was interviewed by the Child Advocacy Center. According to court documents, the minor told interviewers that Habros had been watching her at the playground by Old St. Joe’s earlier this month, when he reportedly forced her into his van and began to grope her. The child, 7 years of age, told the CAC that Habros grabbed her by her hoodie so tightly that she couldn’t breathe and that she escaped the van when Habros was watching other children at the park.
The minor was able to escape the van and fled to the nearby supermarket for safety. Habros told Nome police that the girl got into the vehicle on her own and asked him to buy her a slushee. This incident took place around mid-May.
Habros was also interviewed by police earlier this year for the alleged assault of another minor. The minor reported at the time that the incident in question happened 5-6 years ago. In January, the minor who is now 16, told police that Habros would take her into his van and perform various sex acts on her. This happened multiple times, she reports, from when she was between 10 and 12-years-old.
These reports had the Nome Police looking through their database for other incidents that may have involved Habros, according to Nome Police Chief Mike Heintzelman.
“And at that point if we find that there’s a similarity with a name or a suspect, then the cases could be possibly linked.”
Court records for Habros do not show any previous charges against him for assault or sexual abuse of a minor. Habros is currently being held at Anvil Mountain Correctional Center on bail of $50,000.
KNOM will provide more updates on this case as they become available. This is a developing story.
Image at top: Nome Police cruiser parked in town. Stock photo from Matthew F. Smith, KNOM file.