Clay County sexual predator sentenced to life in prison

NAS Jax employee convicted last month of 7 counts of child sex crimes

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Clay County Sheriff's Office booking photo of Jeffrey McDonald

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. - A Naval Air Station Jacksonville employee convicted of seven counts of sex crimes involving a child was sentenced Wednesday to life in prison.

Jeffrey McDonald was also found guilty last month of two counts of tampering with a witness in the case.

Between January 2005 and March 2008, McDonald committed four counts of sexual battery and three counts of lewd or lascivious molestation on a girlĀ  younger than 12.

In 2010, McDonald also secretly recorded a girl younger than 16 while she was undressing in a bathroom.

The 51-year-old was arrested in November. While in jail, McDonald made phone calls, sent letters and used two released inmates to mislead and encourage witnesses not to testify in depositions or at trial, prosecutors said.

"This life sentence was appropriate considering the trauma this defendant left our victim to deal with for the rest of her life. My hope is the sentence will help in her healing process," said Assistant State Attorney James Colaw.

During the sentencing hearing, the judge designated McDonald a sexual predator.

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