Benjamin Curcuru – Baby Raper gets only 45 years


Benjamin Curcuru was found guilty of sodomizing his ex-girlfriend’s two-year-old daughter and was sentenced to 45 years in prison and a $10,000 fine Tuesday.

During the punishment phase of the trial, some described Benjamin Curcuru as an honest family man, while others described him as a dangerous child predator.

After an hour and a half of deliberation, a jury sentenced 30-year-old Curcuru to 45 years behind bars.

During closing arguments, the defense pled with the jury to go easy on Curcuru, given his clean record.

“There is a biblical saying; one cannot have justice without mercy. We are asking for mercy,” Defense Lawyer Mark DiCarlo said.

Before the punishment phase of the trial, jurors heard testimony from those who knew Curcuru best. While family and friends do not excuse what he did, they still say he has a good heart.

“He’s honest, he’s hardworking, he’s kind, he’ll do anything for anybody if you just ask him,” Eric Black, Curcuru’s friend, said.

“He’s good with his family, good with his friends. He has a lot of friendships and he would often help people who were down,” Curcuru’s mother, Laurel Overland, said.

Others believe Curcuru is an absolute danger to the community.

Port Aransas Police Officer Darryl Johnson was asked, “In your opinion based on your training and experience, do you consider Mr. Benjamin Curcuru a dangerous man?”

Johnson replied, “Yes, I do.”

Another person added, “I have never taken care of anyone that had tears like this and I have to say, they had to be incredibly painful when it occurred.”

Curcuru’s ex-girlfriend, Erica Friesenhahn, also took the stand, remorseful for the neglect of her two-year-old daughter. Friesenhahn said she takes full responsibility for her involvement in the child’s injuries.

Charges are expected to be filed against her at a later date.

Even though Curcuru will spend years behind bars, the prosecution said the victim will have to live with the emotional scars for the rest of her life.

“She couldn’t defend herself. There is no telling what horrible unspeakable things this child had to endure that we will never know,” Prosecutor Sandra Eastwood said.

THE FACE OF A MONSTER

Benjamin Curcuru – Baby Raper gets only 45 years


Benjamin Curcuru was found guilty of sodomizing his ex-girlfriend’s two-year-old daughter and was sentenced to 45 years in prison and a $10,000 fine Tuesday.

During the punishment phase of the trial, some described Benjamin Curcuru as an honest family man, while others described him as a dangerous child predator.

After an hour and a half of deliberation, a jury sentenced 30-year-old Curcuru to 45 years behind bars.

During closing arguments, the defense pled with the jury to go easy on Curcuru, given his clean record.

“There is a biblical saying; one cannot have justice without mercy. We are asking for mercy,” Defense Lawyer Mark DiCarlo said.

Before the punishment phase of the trial, jurors heard testimony from those who knew Curcuru best. While family and friends do not excuse what he did, they still say he has a good heart.

“He’s honest, he’s hardworking, he’s kind, he’ll do anything for anybody if you just ask him,” Eric Black, Curcuru’s friend, said.

“He’s good with his family, good with his friends. He has a lot of friendships and he would often help people who were down,” Curcuru’s mother, Laurel Overland, said.

Others believe Curcuru is an absolute danger to the community.

Port Aransas Police Officer Darryl Johnson was asked, “In your opinion based on your training and experience, do you consider Mr. Benjamin Curcuru a dangerous man?”

Johnson replied, “Yes, I do.”

Another person added, “I have never taken care of anyone that had tears like this and I have to say, they had to be incredibly painful when it occurred.”

Curcuru’s ex-girlfriend, Erica Friesenhahn, also took the stand, remorseful for the neglect of her two-year-old daughter. Friesenhahn said she takes full responsibility for her involvement in the child’s injuries.

Charges are expected to be filed against her at a later date.

Even though Curcuru will spend years behind bars, the prosecution said the victim will have to live with the emotional scars for the rest of her life.

“She couldn’t defend herself. There is no telling what horrible unspeakable things this child had to endure that we will never know,” Prosecutor Sandra Eastwood said.

THE FACE OF A MONSTER

Neil Lester Johnson – A filthy pedophile – 13 years is not enough


A “notorious” sexual predator who kidnapped a seven-year-old girl from her bed, raped her in the mud and left her alone and half-naked in a dark alley was sentenced today to 13 years in prison.

Neil Lester Johnson, 32, will be a monitored sex offender for 20 years and must submit his DNA to the national databank.

“In this case, the accused invaded the safety and security of a private residence and made off with the child; the stark horror of that event cannot be overstated,” Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Terry Clackson said.

“From a child’s perspective, what happened here is at the base of all boogeyman fears. (This little girl) was forced to live through it.”

Clackson gave Johnson 22 months credit for the time he spent behind bars awaiting trial, so he has 11 years and two months left to serve.

The girl was sleeping over at a friend’s Bonnie Doon home and was asleep on the living-room floor when Johnson came in through the open back door. He lit a match.

“He holded it close by his face, and he looked like he had an idea or something, to come and get someone,” the child told a police detective after the attack. “The bad guy put his hand over my mouth. I was trying to scream. He picked me up and ran.” Using dolls and drawings, the little girl told detectives about the rape.

“He said that he would break my neck and he said that he would kill me if I didn’t stay still. I just took a deep breath and listened to him.

“It hurt; I put my hands up to push him away. He said, ‘You don’t want to die, right?’ So I just started to be brave and let him keep doing it.” When it was over, he told her to go stand behind a shed. At some point, she called out: “Are you still there?” When she heard no answer, she came out and looked for her pyjama bottoms, but couldn’t find them in the dark. She ran for help.

“I went to five or six houses, and no one answered,” she told the detective. “I went to another home and said, ‘Please answer, please answer.’ ” A woman let her in, wrapped her in a quilt and called police.

“The child was shivering, very cold, wet and dirty,” the woman testified during the trial. “Her hair was wet and matted. The most alarming thing was that she was only partially clothed.” Police searched for months, but could not find the attacker. It wasn’t until 2003 that detectives reopened the cold case and got a DNA hit in the national databank.

A forensic scientist told the jury the odds of a random match to the DNA found on the child’s pyjamas are one in 890 billion. Johnson was a match.

Neil Lester Johnson – A filthy pedophile – 13 years is not enough


A “notorious” sexual predator who kidnapped a seven-year-old girl from her bed, raped her in the mud and left her alone and half-naked in a dark alley was sentenced today to 13 years in prison.

Neil Lester Johnson, 32, will be a monitored sex offender for 20 years and must submit his DNA to the national databank.

“In this case, the accused invaded the safety and security of a private residence and made off with the child; the stark horror of that event cannot be overstated,” Court of Queen’s Bench Justice Terry Clackson said.

“From a child’s perspective, what happened here is at the base of all boogeyman fears. (This little girl) was forced to live through it.”

Clackson gave Johnson 22 months credit for the time he spent behind bars awaiting trial, so he has 11 years and two months left to serve.

The girl was sleeping over at a friend’s Bonnie Doon home and was asleep on the living-room floor when Johnson came in through the open back door. He lit a match.

“He holded it close by his face, and he looked like he had an idea or something, to come and get someone,” the child told a police detective after the attack. “The bad guy put his hand over my mouth. I was trying to scream. He picked me up and ran.” Using dolls and drawings, the little girl told detectives about the rape.

“He said that he would break my neck and he said that he would kill me if I didn’t stay still. I just took a deep breath and listened to him.

“It hurt; I put my hands up to push him away. He said, ‘You don’t want to die, right?’ So I just started to be brave and let him keep doing it.” When it was over, he told her to go stand behind a shed. At some point, she called out: “Are you still there?” When she heard no answer, she came out and looked for her pyjama bottoms, but couldn’t find them in the dark. She ran for help.

“I went to five or six houses, and no one answered,” she told the detective. “I went to another home and said, ‘Please answer, please answer.’ ” A woman let her in, wrapped her in a quilt and called police.

“The child was shivering, very cold, wet and dirty,” the woman testified during the trial. “Her hair was wet and matted. The most alarming thing was that she was only partially clothed.” Police searched for months, but could not find the attacker. It wasn’t until 2003 that detectives reopened the cold case and got a DNA hit in the national databank.

A forensic scientist told the jury the odds of a random match to the DNA found on the child’s pyjamas are one in 890 billion. Johnson was a match.

21 Internet Predators Arrested in Sting

Attorney General Mike Cox and Kent County Sheriff Larry Stelma today announced the arrest of 21 individuals who attempted to engage in sexual activity with children they met on the Internet. The arrests resulted from a joint Internet Child Predator Sting conducted in Kent County from October 17 to 19.

These predators were arrested by Attorney General Agents and Kent County Sheriff Deputies at or near a decoy home in Grand Rapids Township after engaging in explicit Internet chats with undercover agents posing as children.

Virtually all defendants face at least two 20-year felonies: one for Child Sexually Abusive Activity and another for using a computer to engage in that crime. Defendants who sent sexually explicit material online face additional counts. The Attorney General’s office, which will handle the prosecutions, has requested a minimum $50,000 cash bond for each defendant.
An additional round of arrests will follow for individuals who transmitted sexually explicit material, but did not travel to the decoy location.

The defendants from this operation all are males, ranging in age from 20 to 65. A majority of the defendants are from West Michigan, some residing only several miles from the decoy house, while others drove hundreds of miles. Seventeen of the defendants arrested were from Michigan, three were from Indiana, and one from Illinois.

Those from Michigan included two from the city of Wyoming, one from Byron Center, and one from Grand Rapids.

Many defendants carried condoms and some had prior criminal convictions, including domestic violence and home invasion. One reported being an employee for a toy store, while another admitted to kissing his wife goodbye as his two young children were asleep.

Prior to this operation, Cox’s office had already arrested more than 200 Internet predators.
“Internet predators are a dangerous everyday threat to Michigan’s children,” said Cox. “This is a reminder that the Internet allows predators into our homes without even opening a door.”
Sheriff Stelma reminded parents to keep a close watch on their children’s Internet usage.

“This is a great example of law enforcement officials working together to make our community safe,” said Stelma. “It’s important for adults to monitor our children’s Internet activities by providing instruction and establishing rules, such as what kind of sites they can visit, when they can go on line, and how long they can stay there.”

Other partners in the operation included Perverted Justice, a non-profit organization which specializes in identifying online predators, and Investigative Mechanics, Inc., which outfitted the decoy house and neighborhood with state-of-the-art video and audio surveillance equipment.
Citizens can report suspected Internet child predators by calling the Attorney General’s Child and Public Protection Unit at (313) 456-0180. The Attorney General’s office also created the Michigan Cyber Safety Initiative (Michigan CSI) to teach Internet safety to children and adults. For more information, call (877) 765-8388 or go to http://www.michigan.gov/csi.

Robert James Ferguson – Repeat Sex Offender – Bus Driver Sexual Groomer

A former bus driver sentenced yesterday to 26 months in prison for sexually grooming two 15-year-old boys he met on the buses passed a compulsory police check despite a string of sexual offence convictions.

Robert James Ferguson, 59, groomed the two boys when he was a driver for Red Bus in Christchurch between March 2006 and July 2007. He has six convictions for indecent exposure and convictions for indecent assaults on boys in 1991 and 1992.

Red Bus chief executive Paul McNoe said he was unaware of the previous convictions.

Ferguson passed a criminal record check conducted by police before any passenger licence was granted, he said.

McNoe said he was surprised Ferguson passed the police check when he had previous convictions.

“I am surprised he just got checked and was permitted to go back into serving the public. Someone in that background is not someone we would prefer, but it is not something we would be aware of,” he said.

“He went through the check and was found to be OK according to the police at that time … We rely on the police to do their work and rely on their system to advise us `yes’ or `no’.”

Red Bus was told by police in July last year when the new charges were made against Ferguson, meaning his passenger licence would be rescinded. His employment was immediately terminated.

A police national headquarters spokesman said Ferguson passed the criminal record check, known as a fit and proper person check, because his previous convictions were more than a decade old.

The Land Transport Act specifies a passenger licence can be granted if the offence is more than 10 years old.

Ferguson was convicted last month in the Christchurch District Court for the sexual grooming charges, but was acquitted of charges of sexual violation and indecent assault. The sentencing yesterday was the first for sexual grooming without a more serious sexual offence conviction.

Judge Jane Farish said the sexual grooming was a serious offence, reported Christchurch Court News.

“This was a serious breach of trust. You were a bus driver and the boys should have been safe in your care,” she said.

“25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years”
………Sarah Tofte