NAUGATUCK — Only hours after a couple was married this summer, a fight at their wedding reception turned into child molestation and rape charges against the groom, who was later shot in the stomach by the bride’s father, according to police and multiple court documents.
Police launched an investigation into James Aho, 40, on Aug. 5 after Aho was shot in Prospect after his wedding party in Naugatuck. Aho survived that shooting and has been held on bonds totaling more than $1 million as he awaits trial.
Witnesses told police Aho was drunk and out of control at the party that followed his wedding. At some point during the party, he charged at a relative of his new bride who accused him of molesting several children she knew.
A man stepped in between the two to break up the fight, according to reports. Aho slammed his fists into the wall and bloodied his hands as he shattered picture frames, yelling he would cut the man’s head off and kill his bride’s family if charges were filed against him, a witness told police.
While police were searching for Aho, he showed up hours later at his new father-in-law’s home on Roaring Brook Road in Prospect. The older man, armed with a gun, confronted Aho outside the home, telling him he couldn’t believe what was alleged he did to the children. Aho made a crude remark, threw a beer at the older man and charged at him, a witness told police.
Aho’s father-in-law fired off a round at Aho, hitting him in the abdomen. The father-in-law has not been charged in connection with the shooting.
In the following weeks, investigators tracked down a young girl who told them Aho molested her for years, as well as harassing her and choking her until she passed out.
A second young girl told an investigator Aho also forced himself on her. One of the girls disclosed the abuse to the relative who confronted Aho about it at the party, which led to the police investigation.
Aho, who has a past conviction for first-degree robbery, denied the accusations during a police interview, telling an investigator he doesn’t have sex with or touch children.
Naugatuck police charged him with four counts of first-degree sexual assault, six counts of illegal sexual contact with a victim, four counts of risk of injury to a minor and strangulation. He also faces multiple counts of threatening in connection with the ruckus at the wedding party.
Aho’s wife filed for divorce in the weeks following his arrest.
Aho is due in Waterbury Superior Court on Nov. 27. There is no attorney listed for him in court records.