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Prosecutor confirms Stephan Sterns sexually abused Madeline Soto

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Madeline Soto's sexual abuse confirmed (Photo: Orange County Sheriff's Offic / AP)
  • Madeline Soto’s sexual abuse has been confirmed.
  • Her mother’s boyfriend is being held in connection with the crime.
  • Stephan Sterns is awaiting trial.

A new detail has come to light in the tragic Madeline Soto case, and it confirms what everyone suspected.

The 13-year-old was being abused by her mother’s boyfriend, Stephan Sterns, Orange-Osceola State Attorney Andrew Bain said.

The prosecutor stressed that they believe Madeline was Sterns’ only victim more than a month after the investigation into the teen’s death began.

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What did police find on Madeline Soto’s phone?

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PHOTO: The Associated Press

Stephan Sterns had been in a relationship with Madeline’s mother Jennifer Soto, for more than two years, and was arrested on February 28 as the main suspect in her death.

This came after Orange Police found disturbing images on his cell phone.

The prosecutor does not detail the content of the videos found on the accused’s mobile phone.

«Stephan Sterns, 37, was already sexually abusing Madeline in August 2022, when she was 11 years old,» according to the affidavit made public by WFLA.

Madeline Soto’s sexual abuse is confirmed

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PHOTO Orange County Sheriff’s Office

Despite confirming that Sterns was sexually abusing Madeline Soto, the prosecutor said that to date there have been no arrests or charges in the girl’s death.

«Right now we are working on solving her murder,» the Bain said.

«We are working diligently to ensure we obtain all information before making any decisions regarding this case.»

Bain commented that there is concern over how long the investigation is taking.

Was Madeline’s mom involved in her death?

John Mina, Orange County Sheriff, Stephan Sterns, suspect, MundoNOW
PHOTO: Facebook /Orange-Osceola State Attorney, Andrew Bain.

He pointed out that the different agencies involved «try to do it well, that is the most important thing.»

«I think people are focusing on how long this is taking, but we want to find the culprit or culprits,» Bain said.

«Getting all the evidence we need in this case, we can’t rush things,» he added.

Because it is an active investigation, he refused to confirm whether Madeline Soto’s mother is involved or was aware of what was happening with her daughter.

Stephan Sterns face 60 criminal charges related to Madeline Soto’s sexual abuse

Madeline Soto, stephan stearns sexual abuse, murder, madeline soto's sexual abuse
Madeline Soto’s sexual abuse is confirmed /PHOTO: Instagram

Sterns was charged with 60 criminal counts, including eight counts of sexual assault on a child under 12 years of age.

He also faces five counts of sexual assault of a child between 12 and 18 years old.

In addition there are seven counts of lewd or lascivious sexual abuse and 40 counts of unlawful possession of materials depicting sexual performance by a child 10 years of age or older.

During the transfer from the Orange County Jail to the Osceola County Jail, Sterns had a brief conversation with the guard.

Stephan Sterns complains about prison in a new video

Madeline Soto, stephan stearns sexual abuse, murder, madeline soto's sexual abuse
PHOTO: Facebook / Orange-Osceola State Attorney, Andrew Bain.

Dashcam video caught the exchange between Sterns and a police officer while he was being transferred on March 1, 2024, according to Fox 35.

In the video, the accused is heard saying that the first night in prison he slept «on concrete floor using toilet paper for a pillow.»

Sterns’ trial is scheduled to begin on May 13.

So far none of the charges against him are linked to Madeline’s death.

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