Saturday, June 27, 2009

Obion County, TN teacher fired due to sexual proposition towards 18 year old student

The Obion County School Board voted unanimously to fire a 24 year veteran teacher for hitting on an 18 year old student during a school sponsored trip after a 4 hour hearing Thursday night.

The incident involving the student S.C. stemmed from a convention of the Future Farmers Of America (FFA) which took place in Gatlinburg, TN. The student went out with others to eat, then was called into South Fulton High School agriculture teacher Bryant Driver's hotel room. S.C. thought that she was going to be reprimanded for smoking and brought an adult female chaperone with her. After the chaperone left, Driver, 46, instructed her to close the door and started to take about his marriage and other subjects, eventually hitting on S.C.

S.C., scared, pretended to recieve texts so she could leave the situation, and contacted her mother. The mother contacted school officials, who then confronted Driver. Driver admitted during the hearing that he began to see S.C. as a "young lady" instead of a student, but denied the sexual banter. He admitted that he tole the victim that he thought a lot about her, and “probably love[d] her, if you want to know the truth.”

The insubordination charge was the result of an incident in which Driver, while on suspension status, allegedly came to a school-sponsored Vocational Advisory Committee meeting the evening of April 2 and initially refused to leave, according to the charge letters recently presented to the board by Obion County Director of Schools David Huss, who recommended Driver be dismissed.

Driver, who had been on suspension status since April 2, had requested Thursday night’s hearing as part of the due process afforded him. He was represented by Virginia A. McCoy, an attorney with the Tennessee Education Association, while school administration was represented by attorney John Miles of Union City.

In Tennessee, teacher student sex is punishable by prison time only when the student is under 18. States such as TX, WA, OH, and NC criminally prohibit teacher/student sex at any age.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Jail guard sentenced to 60 days jail, sex offender restrictions after "affair"

A Missouri jail officer was ordered to undergo 5 years of probation, sex offender treatment, and 60 days in jail after a sexual relationship with an inmate turned into marriage. 29 year old Tara Hewkin, of the St. Louis suburb of Warrenton was sentenced by Circuit Judge Keith Sutherland yesterday after being convicted on March 26 in a bench trial. Sentencing was delayed to give probation officers time to prepare a report.

Hewkin began working at the jail as a corrections officer in April 2007. David Latham, 34, was one of several federal inmates being housed in the Warren County jail in the fall of 2007. On Oct. 15, 2007, jail staff found a cell phone in Latham's cell. Officers determined it belonged to Hewkin.

Hewkin admitted to police she gave Latham the phone so he could stay in touch with her. She told police she and Latham were involved in an intimate relationship. She reported that on three occasions she and Latham had sexual contact, once in the laundry room of the jail and the other times between the doors of two cell pods.

Latham was convicted on marijuana charges and sentenced to 5 years in USP Leavenworth. Besides the conviction, as a sex offender, Hewkin cannot live within 1000 feet of schools or day care centers.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Chris Brown sentenced to community service, 150 foot buffer after plea in attack on Rihanna

From the LA Times

Chris Brown will do six months of "community labor" but no time behind bars for assaulting the pop star Rihanna under the terms of a plea agreement reached this afternoon [June 22].

The R&B singer reached a deal with prosecutors less than two hours before the scheduled start of a hearing, in which his former girlfriend was prepared to testify about the violent altercation that left her bruised, bloodied and screaming for help last February on a Hancock Park side street.
Under the agreement, Brown, 20, will serve five years' probation and take a year-long domestic violence prevention class. L.A. County Superior Court Judge Patricia Schnegg also ordered him to stay at least 50 yards away from Rihanna, 21, for the next five years.

After a lawyer for Rihanna said the singer thought the order was too severe given that they often attend the same industry functions, the judge said that at such public events Brown was required to stay only 10 yards away.

The judge said Brown can complete his sentence in his native Virginia, where he owns a home.
"I think it's commendable you took responsibility for your conduct," Schnegg told the singer.
Rihanna, whose real name is Robyn Rihanna Fenty, entered the courtroom through a back entrance as Brown, his mother and an entourage of eight filed out.

The pop star, wearing a short black dress and pearl necklace, listened as the judge explained the terms of the protective order. Her only words were a quick "thank you" to the judge.

Outside the courthouse, her lawyer, Donald Etra, said she "did not object" to the deal when informed of it this afternoon in the L.A. County district attorney's office."She was fully prepared to testify. She would have told the truth about what happened that night," Etra said.

A spokeswoman for the district attorney's office said the agreement was "similar to those in other cases where the defendant is charged ... with this type of felony."She noted that Brown would be required to perform about 1,400 hours of trash pickup, graffiti removal or similar tasks.

"The sentence is not an easy task," spokeswoman Sandi Gibbons said.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Former Boise, ID teacher gets 6 months in jail, 10 years probation for sex with student

Michelle Farley, a married mother of a 5 year old boy, was sentenced to up to 6 months in jail, a $2000 fine, and sex offender treatment and registration for having a relationship with a 17 year old boy while she taught philosophy at Boise, ID's Borah High School. The jail term may be shortened once Farley completes a "thinking errors" course at the Ada County Jail, where she is scheduled to be held. Fourth District Judge Timothy Hansen accepted Farley's plea agreement Friday.

The sentence also includes 10 years probation, a prohibition on being near school property, which is why attorney Chuck Peterson wanted a sentence that would allow Farley to take her 5 year old son to kindergarten this fall.

"I want to apologize to (the teen) and his family for the embarrassment and hurt I caused. It hurts me that I have hurt so many people because what I did was so wrong."

Ada County prosecutors say [the victim] was in Farley's psychology class in the 2008/2009 school year when the two began their sexual relationship. Court records say the boy told police he had as many as 15 sexual encounters with Farley between May and Oct. 30.

Ada County Deputy Prosecutor Fafa Alidjani told Hansen that Farley displayed "classic grooming behavior," giving him attention and gifts before the relationship got sexual.

Alidjani also said the teen suffered humiliation once news of Farley's arrest got out, since many students knew who he was - including students at other schools who watched sporting events he participated in.

But Peterson said the teen turned 18 in October and was a willing participant in the relationship.
"She was attracted to a younger man," Peterson said. "It is not a case of sexual abuse of an adolescent."

Peterson also said that the teen sought out the relationship to become "a legend," "but he didn't become a legend. He became a pariah," Peterson said. "He brought the whole thing down on his head." He also showed her psychosexual evaluation showed that she was a low risk to reoffend.

However, Judge Hansen explained that the victim was too young to make informed decisions on sex with adults. Hansen also made sure that Farley recognized she was a sex offender.

"I want to emphasize for the record, ma'am, you are a sexual offender," Hansen said. "You will be a sex offender under Idaho law."

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Black Canadian prosecutor accuses Toronto police of sexually motivated strip search

Betsy Powell

A Crown attorney is asking a Superior Court judge to lay sexual assault charges against two Toronto police officers who "forced him to submit to an unlawful strip search," according to court documents.

The prosecutor, identified on the court docket yesterday as R.S., is appealing a decision by a justice of the peace last year not to charge the officers in connection with the Oct. 6, 2007, incident.

The allegation raises "implications for police as it relates to their long impugned practice of conducting strip searches on short-term detainees without the requisite lawful grounds," according to court documents filed by Donald McLeod, the lawyer representing R.S.

The justice of the peace did, however, approve assault charges against the two arresting officers after R.S. took the unusual step of laying charges privately. Those charges were withdrawn in March.

The 37-year-old Crown attorney, who is black, was arrested for causing a disturbance in the Entertainment District and later filed a human rights tribunal complaint alleging racism was behind his arrest. He was identified when the story became public earlier this year.

Now McLeod and Patrice Band, the lawyer representing the Crown, are requesting a publication ban on the full identify of R.S. as well as the two officers.

Justice Ian Nordheimer yesterday adjourned the matter to July 7.
The court documents submitted on behalf of R.S. say there was nothing "that could possibly justify a complete level 3 strip search."

"The applicant believed he was forced to submit to the degrading and humiliating strip search for an improper purpose – the impugned officers wanted to teach him a lesson."

During the strip search, R.S. says he was forced to "touch and manipulate his genitalia with his hands." He submits "that when assessed in the context of the relevant and controlling judicial authorities, the conduct of the impugned officers satisfies the legal elements of sexual assault."
A factum filed on behalf of the respondent says "there is no evidence that the search was conducted in circumstances of a sexual nature."

Arkansas teacher charged with sexual assault of 18 year old student sentenced to 5 years probation, 120 days jail

(Originally Posted 4-1-08)
The arraignment for a Arkansas teacher charged with having sex with an 18 year student and giving him alcohol 4 times was arraigned yesterday. Melissa Gail Monroe, 32 was charged with 2nd degree sexual assault, a Class B felony, and furnishing alcohol to a minor, a Class C misdemeanor.

According to court documents, Monroe invited the young man to her house on a January evening when her husband was out of town. The student later told police they had sex and he stayed the night. The boy had just turned 18.

It is illegal in Arkansas for teachers, law enforcement officers and others in a position of trust or authority over a minor (under age 21) to engage in sexual conduct with the minor. [If there is a fiduciary relationship between two people, then it should be illegal in all cases, not just when victims are people under drinking age]. Statements made by Monroe to a fellow teacher indicate she may not have known the act was illegal.

Monroe sent a text message [to] a fellow teacher at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 14 that read, "Help! I've made the worst decision of my life. And I don't know what to do." Monroe said that January night she was drinking and texting with a student, court documents say. She said the student wanted to come over but she told him no. Eventually, he came over and they had sex three times, according to a probable cause affidavit submitted by Detective Mark Jordan of the Bentonville Police Department.

Later that evening, Monroe texted, "You don't hate me do you?" and "At least he was legal. Haha."

On Feb. 19, the fellow teacher went to Principal Steve Jacoby and said Monroe told her she had sex with the student. Police were summoned, and the student was interviewed.Monroe initially denied allegations to police but later admitted having sex with the student, the affidavit states. Police asked her if the boy forced himself on her, and she said no. Monroe worked in the Bentonville School District for seven and a half years.

Class B felonies in Arkansas are punishable by between 5 and 20 years in prison and a maximum fine of $15,000.

(Update 5-18-08) Monroe is appealing, stating through her lawyer that she'll appral the portion of the law which states that sexual contact with 18 year old students is unconstitutional.

(Update 9-14-08) Benton County Circuit Judge David Clinger rejected Monroe's argument that the statute violated the rights of consenting adults to "engage in private, consensual, noncommercial acts of sexual intimacy." Lawyer Allan Lane cited Lawrence vs. Texas.

The state, led by Deputy Prosecutor Joni Rose, countered the law is rational because the state had a right to promote a safe environment in schools.

(Update 6-20-09) Monroe and her attorneys were scheduled to introduce arguments Thursday, June 18, that would have let them introduce the sexual history of the student she was charged with victimizing in preparation for the trial on June 23. However, she pled guilty as charged to a count of 2nd degree sexual assault and furnishing alcohol to a minor.

Monroe's attorney, Alan Lane, and Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Joni Rose were able to resolve the case with a plea agreement that requires Monroe to serve a jail sentence and be placed on state-supervised probation.

Rose told Circuit Judge David Clinger that Monroe's case is unusual because she is charged with having sex with an adult, but her actions are a crime. Rose said the victim and law enforcement supported the plea agreement. Lane told Clinger that Monroe is already seeing a counselor and that she and her husband are also involved with marriage counseling.

Clinger did not object to the lack of jail time because he was "satisfied you suffered in this regard -You lost your job." Rose stated that "From what the state understands, Mrs. Monroe will never teach again."

Besides 5 years probation, Monroe was sentenced to 120 days in the Benton County Jail, $1670 in court costs, and sex offender registration. Monroe has to report to jail by 7 PM August 23.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Iraq veteran sentenced to 20 to life in rape, murder of mother of 3

A former Army reservist was sentenced to 20 years to life for the rape and murder of a co worker. The sentence against Jeremy Shields, 28, came on June 17, after a plea deal of guilty to rape, murder, and tampering with physical evidence. Though the judge said that the sentence was acceptable, Wendy Sue Logsdon's brother had to be restrained by bailliffs.

Logsdon, a mother of three, disappeared after she was supposed to meet Shields at a Louisville bar in January 2008. Her half-burned body was found two days later in rural Hart County. Police said Shields and Logsdon worked at the Zappo's warehouse in Bullitt County and that Shields met the Louisville woman for a date, killed her in Radcliff and dumped her body in Hart County.

According to police, Shields drugged Logsdon with GHB, a "date rape" drug, killed and raped her, and hid her body for two days in his parents house.The body was found four days later, half burned, duct taped, on a road in Hart County.

They were both hired at the shoe distribution warehouse in December 2007.

According to published reports, doctors diagnosed Shields with chronic post-traumatic stress disorder. He was found competent to stand trial last August.

Shields' father, Lunisi Mau, stated that the disorder stemmed from his role at a tuck driver early in the Iraqi occupation.

Victim impact statements were heard from Logsdon's aunt, mother, and son. Toni Christy, the aunt, said that "She had children. She was a niece. She was a granddaughter. She was a child. She was a mother. She wasn't just something, she was a human being and you had no right to take that life."

Logsdon's mother, Teresa Logsdon, stated that "My life will never be the same again, and it's not just because she died -- it's how she died. What you have done to her has devastated me. I hate you. I hate you."

Seventeen year old Trey McIntosh described the impact of losing his mother. "I moved in with my father and stuff which didn't work out so well. My life's pretty much never going to be the same because of what he did."

Saturday, June 13, 2009

"Man" arranges for wife rape through Craigslist

(Original Post 6-3-09)

According to the Kannapolis Police, a 25 year old man used Craigslist to find a man willing to rape the poster's wife. The incident, which occured with the victim's two kids sleeping in the home, happened at 2:45 AM on May 31. The attacker, armed with a knife, raped the victim at knifepoint. The kids, aged 3 and 4, in the home were found unharmed, and the woman was taken to a local hospital for an exam.

Kannapolis Police Chief James “Woody” Chavis said about the attack, “When the victim woke up and she saw a male standing at the foot of the bed holding a knife.”

"[The 'husband'] solicited him to enter his house and sexually assault his wife," Chavis also said. "It's very unusual, and I've been in law enforcement a long time."

Police grew suspicious when discrepancies in the victim's and the husband's stories appeared during questioning. The lack of forced entry also raised suspicions, confirmed after the police found the husband's Craigslist ads seeking someone "to have sex with his wife using some type of scare tactic.”

Another clue that pointed to the husband was that the "man" did nothing to stop the attack.

Because the posting was done without the victim's knowledge, let alone consent, the husband was charged with a count of rape, 2 counts of 1st degree sex offense, and a count a attempted 1st degree sex offense.

Craigslist has come under fire in recent months. In April, Philip Markoff was accused of killing a New York City woman who offered masseuse services through the Web site. Police have also accused the 22-year-old in the armed robbery of another woman. Police said both women had advertised erotic services on Craigslist.

The company has promised to eliminate the category and replace it with a new “adult services” section, where ads will be screened before they are posted.

The man who actually had sex with the victim may not have been aware that the woman had not consented, which is necessary to prove rape.

(Update 6-11-09) Kannapolis police have released a court document detailing more about the crime commited when the "husband" allegedly asked a man to rape his wife at gunpoint.

According to the court document, the wife and her husband were in bed and confronted at about 2 a.m. by a six-foot-tall assailant wielding a knife. He demanded $3,000. The wife said she only had a few hundred dollars.

“… the suspect said that was not enough and that he would get the money from her one way or the other,” the investigating officer wrote in the affidavit. “(The victim) stated that she was afraid for her children who were in another room directly across from her room.”

At the hospital, the victim described the events to the investigator.

“She also stated that her husband's sexual fantasy is having sex with her and another male,” the investigator wrote in the affidavit. “She said that she has checked her husband's e-mail in the past and found e-mail communication where he was requesting someone to please her.”

The husband was convicted last year of indecent exposure in Chesterfield County, Va., according to court documents. He was accused by police of exposing himself twice to a woman delivering pizza to his hotel room.

The Kannapolis home was also the site of a daycare, however, since the sex offense ws a misdemeanor, the husband was not required to stay away from children. Lt. Ken Jackson of the Kannapolis police said that only 1 child was attending the daycare, and the child was off the premises at the time of the attack.

The most shocking part of this, in my opinion, was that the husband told his wife to take a shower (destroying DNA evidence) and not to call police. The wife, after the intruder set down his knife, “was able to get the knife and throw it off the opposite side of the bed near her husband.” Her aim was a bit off, I suspect.

(Update 6-13-09) Kannapolis police arrested the remaining suspect in the case yesterday. 39 year old Rodney Liverman, of Norwood, NC, is being held on $250,000 bond on charges of 1st degree rape.

Note - In all stories, the husband's name has been withheld in order to protect the victim, but in this case, the information already released by the officials in this case is enough to identify the victim. It doesn't just take releasing names for people to figure out more info in cases like this.

Colorado inmate gets $1.3 M for prison rapes by guard

The Associated Press Thursday, June 11, 2009; 12:58 PM

DENVER -- A Colorado inmate who was repeatedly sexually assaulted by a guard was awarded $1.3 million by a judge who said he wanted to send a message that prison rapes will not be tolerated.

In a ruling issued Wednesday, U.S. Circuit Judge David M. Ebel said the Colorado Department of Corrections doesn't effectively prevent sexual assaults against inmates.

The woman at the Denver Women's Correctional Facility sued former Sgt. LeShawn Terrell last year, claiming he repeatedly assaulted her and raped her in 2006. She settled out of court with the Corrections Department for $250,000.

"The right to be safe from sexual assault and rape by one of her guards turned out to be worth no more than the paper upon which (the regulation) was written," Ebel wrote.

Prison records show the 34-year-old victim is serving time on drug, burglary and escape charges and will be eligible for parole in October. The $1.3 million award includes $354,070 in compensatory damages for pain and suffering, plus $1 million in punitive damages against Terrell.

He pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor charge of unlawful sexual contact and was sentenced to 60 days in jail. Ebel criticized that sentence as too short.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Azle, TX high school teacher faces sex charges for sex with 18 year old - sentenced to prison, probation

(Original Post 11-16-08)
A female private school teacher is accused of having a sexual relationship with an 18 year old studnet, and a second suspected relationship with a 17 year old. Julianna Sauls, a married 38 year old algebra teacher at Azle Christian School in Azle, TX, is facing a charge of improper relationship between teacher and student.

The 18 year old alleged victim and his father stated the sexual contact began at schol in September, when Sauls began to grope him both under and over his clothes, and forced him to touch her breast and make out with him before she would let him leave her classroom. All of these incidents occurred in isolation.

[The victim] showed investigators a pink note with Sauls’ home address and phone number, which he said the married mother of two had given him "so he could come to her home and have sex with her while her children were asleep," the affidavit states.

After setting up a meeting with Sauls in the parking lot of Azle High, where she agreed not to try anything sexual, a "normal" conversation turned into Sauls complaning about sexual inadequacies with her husband, and led to her performing oral sex with the 18 year old. The victim wanted to stop seeing Sauls because she was his teacher, and wasn't attractive to him.

"After the first few seconds of what was going on, he regained his composure enough to realize this was not proper," Azle Police Chief Steve Myers said.

"Prior to him leaving, [Sauls] told the victim to 'trust her’ and that all the other boys trusted her," the affidavit stated, leading investigators to believe that other students may have been involved.

After that incident, Sauls pulled down her lower hip to show a tattoo, and they both went to a Ft. Worth tattoo shop to get matching tattoos. Sauls also called and texted the victim, and sent an e-mail "which showed that she wanted to talk to the victim, was thinking about him and gave him instructions to delete her telephone number after they talk on the phone." A police investigation started October 28, and Sauls was arrested Wednesday, but released on bail. Sauls was dismissed from her job due to "lack of work," and faces both Tarrant and Parker County charges.

Normally, the age of consent in Texas is 17, but a 2003 law states teachers cannot have consensual relationships with high school students.

While police were interviewing other students about the teacher, a 17-year-old student disclosed that Sauls had also had sexual contact with him in recent months outside his residence in unincorporated Parker County, Azle authorities said.

"My understanding is it occurred in the student’s driveway late one night," Azle police Lt. Lee Blaisdell said. "I believe the student’s mother pulled in the driveway and found the teacher parked in the driveway with her son. At the time, they were denying that anything had happened."

Azle police gave the 17-year-old’s statement to Parker County sheriff’s officials, who are now investigating that case and another incident involving the 18-year-old student that may have occurred in their jurisdiction.

"I know there’s more victims out there but they’re not coming forward out of fear, retaliation and embarrassment," Azle police Detective Richard Martinez said. "I wish they would come forward. They’re the victims. They didn’t do anything wrong."

Sauls' teaching certificate is valid through September 2013, according to records, and Martinez chided those who saw no harm in an 18 year old with his teacher, stating that "the point is parents pay good money to send their child to get a good education. They didn’t send their child to be a victim and be assaulted."

(Update 12-7-08) Sauls was formally charged with two more counts of the same crime regarding both the 17 year and 18 year old victims in Parker County. She was released on $60,000 bail December 3.

(Update 6-9-09) After a plea deal, Sauls was sentenced to 6 months in jail and a 9 1/2 month suspended sentence for 2 counts of improper relationship between an educator and a student. 43rd District Judge Don Chrestman imposed the sentence. According to Parker County Assistant District Attorney Jeff Swain, other punishment includes 10 years of probation, 400 hours of community service, a $4000 fine, sex offender treatment, and a ban from all junior high and high school aged youths, including the victims.

District Judge Sharen Wilson also sentenced Sauls in Tarrant County to 5 years probation, 240 hours of community service, 6 months in jail, to be served after release from prison in the Parker County case, and a mental health evaluation. The victim involved in the Tarrant county case is one of the victims in the Parker County indictments.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Diver convicted of manslaughter in death of wife

Honeymoon killer sent to jail
Christine Flatley [Brisbane (Australia) Times]

June 5, 2009 - 5:29PM

The family of an American woman who died while scuba diving on her honeymoon still believe she was murdered, even after prosecutors accepted her killer's plea of manslaughter.

David Gabriel Watson, 32, was sentenced to four-and-a-half years' jail on Friday after pleading guilty in the Supreme Court in Brisbane to killing his new wife, Christina (Tina) while scuba diving in north Queensland in October 2003. He had been charged with murder, to which he pleaded not guilty, but Crown prosecutors accepted the plea to the lesser charge.

Prosecutor Brendan Campbell told the court the manslaughter plea was accepted on the basis that Watson had failed in his duty as Tina's dive buddy by not giving her emergency oxygen.

Outside court after their daughter's killer was jailed, Tina's father Tommy Thomas expressed the family's disbelief at the manslaughter sentence.

"I'm sure that the entire Australian nation as well as our country back home shares in the shock at what we've just seen, because it's a total injustice ... it's ludicrous," he said.

Today he (Watson) was allowed to take the easy way out. This is in no way, shape or form a beginning to get justice for our daughter. It's an embarrassment to everyone involved. We believe that Gabe Watson murdered our daughter."

Mr Thomas, Tina's sister Alanda and friend Amanda Phillips flew from Alabama to Australia this week to be in court for Watson's sentencing.Watson's new wife, Kim Lewis, was also in court.

During the hearing the court was told Watson allowed Tina to sink to the ocean floor without making any serious attempt to retrieve her, and that he did not inflate her buoyancy vest or remove weights from her belt.

"He virtually extinguished any chance of her survival," Mr Campbell said.

Watson married Tina in a ceremony described by her friends as her dream wedding in Birmingham, Alabama, on October 11, 2003. Eleven days later, a dive instructor found her lying on the bottom of the ocean during a week-long Great Barrier Reef scuba-diving trip off the coast of Townsville.

A coronial inquest into her death heard a fellow diver saw Gabe Watson engaged in an underwater "bearhug" with his petite wife, after which the bubble-wrap salesman headed for the surface while his wife fell to the ocean floor.

Coroner David Glasgow formally charged Watson with murder in June 2008 and the American voluntarily returned to Australia in mid-May 2009. The Supreme Court was told on Friday that Watson was an experienced diver who had been trained in rescuing panicked divers.

Watson told police Tina had knocked his mask off and then had sunk too quickly for him to retrieve her. But the Crown rejected this explanation, saying it would not have been possible for her to sink rapidly.

Mr Thomas on Friday said the family would consider lodging an appeal. Watson will serve 12 months behind bars before he is released on a suspended sentence.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

"Boyfriend" guilty in drugging, rape, stalking of Redding, CA woman

A Redding, CA man was convicted of 26 charges relating to the rape, then stalking of a woman yesterday. Mark Wayne Gray, 42, was convicted by a Shasta County jury of rape, sexual battery, 1st degree residential burglary, and stalking, and faces a maximum sentence of over 20 years.

Senior Deputy District Attorney Stew Jankowitz filled in Wednesday for vacationing Deputy District Attorney Stephanie Bridgett, who prosecuted Gray. Jankowitz said he was familiar with the case.

His familiarity comes from being the investigator and prosecutor who filed the original charges in this case. He said that the 29 year old victim's "unbelievable abuse" was "a line that was crossed in this case many times....Nobody should have to undergo that."

The victim and Gray had a relationship which ended in 2007. Gray proceeded to stalk her at her workplace, home, and school until September last year. After his arrest, the victim learned that Gray had drugged her during sex. She also learned that Gray had filmed the sexual activity, as well as sex acts involving neighbors. This lead to convictions on a single peeking count and multiple counts of invasion of privacy by means of a video camera.

Sentencing is scheduled for June 30.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Improper behavior leads to CSC charges, conviction for Michigan teacher

(Original Post 9-26-08)

Ranee Sue Proper, a 41 year old teacher from the Michigan town of Holly, was arraigned Tuesday on 5 counts of 3rd degree criminal sexual conduct with students in Clarkston, MI. The incidents, which involved 16 and 17 year old students, allegedly occurred between December and May, and was brought to the attention of authorities in May be a concerned parent.

Proper, who started teaching during the 2004/05 school year, was placed on paid administrative leave May 15 by the Holly School District and was ordered not to contact students or parents by Superintendent Kent Barnes.

"You are hereby directed that during the pending investigation you shall not contact students and/or parents directly or indirectly, via e-mail, phone contact or otherwise, while the investigation is ongoing. Moreover, you shall not be on school district grounds."

Barnes sent a letter June 11 ordering her to appear in his office June 19 for an administrative hearing, but Proper resigned June 25.

"I have thoroughly enjoyed my employment with the Holly Area Schools. However, at this time I am choosing to resign my employment effective today, June 25, 2008." The superintendent confirmed the resignation.

"Mrs. Proper did resign while in the midst of an investigation by the local school district and the village of Holly Police."

Rumors of Proper's alleged intimate relationships with students began spreading around the high school shortly before the end of the school year, sources said."I never thought she would be one of the ones to do that," said Junior Amy Golembiowski. "She seemed normal, and I think she would have been smarter than that."Junior Emily Whitt said her sister had Proper as a teacher."She would let kids give her massages," said Whitt, 16. "I think that's very inappropriate."

Proper, who is married with 3 children, faces 15 years in prison if convicted on all counts. Released on $50,000 bond, her next appearance will be on October 24.

(Update 6-3-09) Proper pled guilty to a single count of CSC 2 (2nd degree criminal sexual conduct) on May 1. As part of the plea deal, prosecutors dismissed 5 CSC 3 counts. Unlike 1st or 3rd degree CSC, there is no mandatory minimum sentence for 2nd degree CSC. 6th Circuit Court Judge Edward Sosnick sentenced her to 9 months in the Oakland County Jail and 5 years of probation earlier this afternoon.

Proper also goes on the sex offender registry, is ordered to attend mental health counseling, and is barred from unsupervised contact with minors except her own kids.

Oakland County prosecutors were allowed to read a letter submitted by the mother of one of Proper's teenaged victims. In the letter, the mother told of the difficult times her son and family had been through as a result of Proper's action. "I'm proud of my son for telling the truth," the letter read. "He may have been a victim, but now he is a survivor."

Proper's attorney Raymond Correll said that over the last year, Proper has had strong community support, as well as the support of her husband, Tom, family members and children.
"She has significant remorse and feels very badly about what happened," he said.

Sosnick said before sentencing that deterrence of other adult-minor sexual encounters was a major part of Proper's sentence.

"You must pay the consequences of some very, very bad judgment. The best way for you to move on is to throw yourself into the counseling and begin to understand why it happened in the first place."

Former Navy Chaplain sentenced to 10 years for sexual exploitation of young female sailors

Former Navy Chaplain Lt. Shane Dillman was sentenced to 10 years in prison and discharge from the Navy for taking sexual advantage of young Navy sailors he was supposed to be ministering to. The sentence, handed down yesterday by Capt. Moira Modzelewski, must be affirmed by the commander of Naval Air Force Atlantic Rear Adm. Richard O'Hanlon.

Dillman admitted to multiple affairs with women but pleaded not guilty to rape, fraternization, and making a threat. After a 4 day trial, only the making a threat charge led to a not guilty verdict.

Dillman, a married father of three, was a Pentecostal minister endorsed by the Coalition of Spirit-Filled Churches. He has been on administrative duty since the charges were filed.
Charles Gittins, his civilian lawyer, said before sentencing that Dillman, 37, had been affected by ministering to more than 800 injured Marines while stationed at Bethesda Naval Medical Center.

A defense witness, psychologist Don Lewittes, said Dillman likely suffered from "vicarious traumatization," and began feeling dead inside. The sex was a means of trying to feel alive, Lewittes theorized.

When Dillman spoke at his sentencing hearing, he apoligozed to his family, the Navy, and God, saing that it was an honor to have served as a chaplain for a dozen years.

Lt. j.g. Bill Geraty said that the a sentenced in Dillman's statement, "I'm sorry the circumstances have taken ministry opportunities away from me," showed that the defendant showed a lack of remorse and a focus on his own losses, not the impact of the crime on the victims. Geraty also explained that the pattern of friendship leading to sexual involvement was "not a case of 'Whoops, I stepped over the line.'

"This was calculated...When Marines and sailors go to a chaplain for solace," he said, "they do not expect to enter the wolf's lair."

Monday, June 1, 2009

Suburban Brisbane woman jailed for stabbing "partner"

Lover jailed over bisexual stab row
Amelia Bentley [Brisbane Times]
June 1, 2009 - 3:30PM

A Brisbane mother-of-three has been jailed after a jury found her guilty of stabbing her lesbian lover in the eye with a kitchen knife.

Amanda Lee Bentley, 35, of Kallangur, was jailed for three years after being found guilty of grievous bodily harm and unlawful wounding of her then-partner Rachel Sparrow.

Bentley will be released on a suspended sentence after she serves 18 months behind bars.

During a trial in Brisbane District Court last week, the jury was told Bentley stabbed Ms Sparrow in the right eye and then twice in the back of the neck and the shoulder during an argument at Bentley's home in February last year.

The couple and Bentley's children had been celebrating Ms Sparrow's son's birthday when she and Bentley decided to drive to a bottle shop to get more beer.

When they returned, an argument broke out about Ms Sparrow's driving and Ms Sparrow called Bentley "a fucking slut" because she was upset Bentley was also having a relationship with a man while she was intimate with her.

Bentley then grabbed a knife from a knife block and came at her, stabbing her in the right eye.
Ms Sparrow said she cowered over a kitchen sink and was stabbed a further three times before she called her son and ran out of the house.

Eye surgery was performed but Ms Sparrow said she still experiences occasional blurred vision in her right eye. Two other wounds she received required sutures and one wound healed on its own.