Child molester gets 60 years in prison


Sioux Falls man was on ‘America’s Most Wanted’

A repeat child molester deemed a high risk to reoffend against adolescent boys was sent to prison Tuesday until he is at least 80.

Brandon Theodore James, 37, admitted engaging in multiple sex acts with two boys, ages 11 and 15, who he met at church.

In a long letter read before the court, the older victim said he was “trapped in a fantasy world” where he thought James was his true love.

The second victim’s mother told James he betrayed the trust of her family, which welcomed him into their home for meals.

“You let (my son) believe that we would be angry with him and punish him for what you did to him,” she said.

James fled the state in 2003 before a grand jury handed down an indictment. He was featured on the “America’s Most Wanted” television show in 2006 and arrested in May while living on a California houseboat.

Minnehaha County State’s Attorney Dave Nelson said James admitted to a psychologist that he had sexual contact with 15 minor males throughout his life.

His first conviction came when he was 16 and was caught molesting a 5-year-old boy, Nelson said.

Subsequent convictions involved boys ages 5, 12 and 13.

“The defendant has a long and repeated and continuous history of abusing young boys,” Nelson said. “This defendant is a hunter; young boys are his prey.”

Circuit Judge Brad Zell imposed a 60-year prison sentence, the maximum under a plea agreement, which saw James plead guilty to pedophilia and rape and sexual contact with minors.

James will be eligible for parole when he is 80.

“I find little hope that treatment will change you because you are who you are,” the judge said.

Doug Lindaman, who identified himself as James’s estranged common-law spouse, said after the hearing that the right kind of treatment would have changed James.

Lindaman, 51, met James in 1990 during sex-offender treatment in an Iowa prison. He said they both were treated with the same programs as heterosexual males and told it is wrong to be gay.

“Had he received gay programming materials, he wouldn’t be here today,” Lindaman said.

With Iowa’s sex-offender treatment, “If he doesn’t come to prison healthy, he’s not gonna leave healthy.”

Lindaman attended the hearing in hopes of speaking to the judge, but James declined to let him speak.

The defendant did give a brief statement wearing the same expressionless face he had shown at other court appearances.

“I regret what I’ve done,” James said. “I realize that I’ve really hurt a lot of people.”

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 7:59 pm  Leave a Comment  

Child molester gets 60 years in prison


Sioux Falls man was on ‘America’s Most Wanted’

A repeat child molester deemed a high risk to reoffend against adolescent boys was sent to prison Tuesday until he is at least 80.

Brandon Theodore James, 37, admitted engaging in multiple sex acts with two boys, ages 11 and 15, who he met at church.

In a long letter read before the court, the older victim said he was “trapped in a fantasy world” where he thought James was his true love.

The second victim’s mother told James he betrayed the trust of her family, which welcomed him into their home for meals.

“You let (my son) believe that we would be angry with him and punish him for what you did to him,” she said.

James fled the state in 2003 before a grand jury handed down an indictment. He was featured on the “America’s Most Wanted” television show in 2006 and arrested in May while living on a California houseboat.

Minnehaha County State’s Attorney Dave Nelson said James admitted to a psychologist that he had sexual contact with 15 minor males throughout his life.

His first conviction came when he was 16 and was caught molesting a 5-year-old boy, Nelson said.

Subsequent convictions involved boys ages 5, 12 and 13.

“The defendant has a long and repeated and continuous history of abusing young boys,” Nelson said. “This defendant is a hunter; young boys are his prey.”

Circuit Judge Brad Zell imposed a 60-year prison sentence, the maximum under a plea agreement, which saw James plead guilty to pedophilia and rape and sexual contact with minors.

James will be eligible for parole when he is 80.

“I find little hope that treatment will change you because you are who you are,” the judge said.

Doug Lindaman, who identified himself as James’s estranged common-law spouse, said after the hearing that the right kind of treatment would have changed James.

Lindaman, 51, met James in 1990 during sex-offender treatment in an Iowa prison. He said they both were treated with the same programs as heterosexual males and told it is wrong to be gay.

“Had he received gay programming materials, he wouldn’t be here today,” Lindaman said.

With Iowa’s sex-offender treatment, “If he doesn’t come to prison healthy, he’s not gonna leave healthy.”

Lindaman attended the hearing in hopes of speaking to the judge, but James declined to let him speak.

The defendant did give a brief statement wearing the same expressionless face he had shown at other court appearances.

“I regret what I’ve done,” James said. “I realize that I’ve really hurt a lot of people.”

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 7:59 pm  Leave a Comment  

Trial to begin for alleged child molester

The trial of a former Cheatham Park Elementary teacher’s assistant facing multiple charges of child rape and sexual battery is scheduled to begin on Nov. 13.

Calvin Darden, 39, of 1509 Cheatham St., is accused of molesting six students between the ages of nine and 12.

He currently faces 25 counts of aggravated sexual battery, five counts of child rape, one count of criminal attempt to commit child rape, three counts of criminal attempt to commit aggravated sexual battery and two counts of aggravated assault in the case, Springfield Police Det. Joann Gregory said.

Darden is currently out of jail on a $250,000 bond. His trial has been posted several times. The original police report on Darden was filed Feb. 10, 2006.

According to Assistant District Attorney Jason White, Darden could be sentenced to a range of 15 to 25 years per charge of child rape if he is found guilty of the crime in court. He could also face a possible sentence of eight to 12 years per count of aggravated sexual battery.

Criminal attempt to commit aggravated sexual battery carries a possible jail term of three to six years and criminal attempt to commit child rape carries a term of eight to 12 years, White explained.

The trial will begin at 8:30 a.m. in Circuit Court at the Robertson County Courthouse.

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 6:53 pm  Leave a Comment  

Judge denies bond reduction for accused child molester

Mesa County District Court Judge Brian Flynn denied a bond reduction for a Grand Junction man accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting two children.

Chief Deputy District Attorney Tammy Eret argued in court Tuesday that bond for registered sex offender Earl Dean Raff, 25, should remain at $250,000 because of the defendant’s prior conviction of sex assault on a child.

Eret said Tuesday there may be up to four victims in the case. She also said members of Raff’s family have been instructing the two children not to talk with investigators and saying they want to resolve the issue among themselves and their church.

“They’ve been saying, ‘We don’t want it in the public; we want to keep it in the church,’ ” Eret told Flynn.

A therapist for the victims told Flynn the children have experienced extreme trauma.

She said the victims have not been sleeping well and are afraid to go to church. Authorities learned of the allegations from a church member.

Raff is charged with 10 felony counts of sexual assault on a child and 10 felony counts of sexual assault on a child as a pattern of abuse in incidents between March and September.

Raff’s attorney, William McNulty, argued for Raff’s bond reduction because Raff is a lifelong local resident with a steady job and a spotless record for always appearing on court dates.

McNulty requested Raff’s bond be reduced to $25,000.

Raff was convicted of sexual assault on a child in a pattern of abuse in 1999 when he was 16. In 2001, Raff was convicted of failing to register as an offender, according to his arrest affidavit.

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 5:46 pm  Leave a Comment  

Child molester sentenced


A man who sexually molested three girls at his mother’s in-home day care will spend 15 years in prison.

Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Robert Winkler ordered that sentence – the maximum – Monday for Christopher Handy, 22, of Miami Township. Handy pleaded guilty Oct. 5 to three charges of gross sexual imposition, court records show.

Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor Megan Shanahan said one victim’s mother found blood in her underwear earlier this year.

When questioned, the girl told her mother what Handy had done.

Handy confessed to police that he harmed the girls, who were cared for by his mother in her Zion Road home in Miami Township, Shanahan said.

Handy’s mother, who no longer runs a day care and was not licensed at the time, did not know about the assaults, Shanahan said.

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 6:08 am  Leave a Comment  

Child molester sentenced


A man who sexually molested three girls at his mother’s in-home day care will spend 15 years in prison.

Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Robert Winkler ordered that sentence – the maximum – Monday for Christopher Handy, 22, of Miami Township. Handy pleaded guilty Oct. 5 to three charges of gross sexual imposition, court records show.

Assistant Hamilton County Prosecutor Megan Shanahan said one victim’s mother found blood in her underwear earlier this year.

When questioned, the girl told her mother what Handy had done.

Handy confessed to police that he harmed the girls, who were cared for by his mother in her Zion Road home in Miami Township, Shanahan said.

Handy’s mother, who no longer runs a day care and was not licensed at the time, did not know about the assaults, Shanahan said.

Published in: on November 7, 2007 at 6:08 am  Leave a Comment