NEVADA, Mo. — A judge has ordered a Michigan man to stand trial on charges that he repeatedly sexually abused an underage girl from Nevada, threatening each time to kill her and her family if she told anyone.

Associate Judge Brandon Fisher decided at the conclusion of a preliminary hearing Thursday in Vernon County Circuit Court that there was probable cause for Shawn M. Swartz, 48, of Stanton, Michigan, to stand trial on charges of first-degree statutory rape, statutory sodomy with a child under 14 years old, third-degree child molestation and sexual misconduct with a child. The judge set July 9 for the defendant's initial appearance in a trial division of the court.

Swartz is accused of sexually abusing the girl on multiple occasions between May 2017 and July 1, 2018, at the victim's home, according to a probable-cause affidavit. Each time, he would say something like: "Remember, if you tell anyone, I will kill you and your family." One time, he also threatened to sexually assault her younger cousin, according to the affidavit.

Jeff Lehr is a reporter for The Joplin Globe.