Friday, May 26, 2017

Pillars of the community who turn out to be molesting creeps!

A couple of months ago, I read the sad tale of former teacher Leslie E. Deane, Jr.  Mr. Deane, a 65 year old Virginia resident, was a middle school teacher in Hanover County for 25 years.  He also coached soccer.  Last June, he stopped working for the school system.

For 18 years, Deane's wife, Aura, ran a home based childcare in Chesterfield County that had the capacity to serve up to twelve children between the ages of newborn to 12.  Mr. Deane was initially arrested for molesting a four year child last June.  When news of his arrest got out, more victims came forward accusing Mr. Deane of molesting them, as well.  The abuse went on from 2001 until 2016 and the victims were all between the ages of four and six years old when it occurred.

Eventually, fourteen charges were brought against Leslie E. Deane, Jr.  Prosecutors withdrew eight of the charges in exchange for Deane's agreement to plead guilty to six of them.  Additionally, Aura Deane closed her childcare and mailed in her license.  Mr. Deane was sentenced to about twenty years in prison and will probably not be a free man again.  I'm sure many of his former students and parents of children who were in his wife's care are horrified.

This story is outrageous, but it seems it's not entirely uncommon.  About fifteen years ago, I became aware of a teacher and sex offender I knew from my days in Gloucester, Virginia.  Olen H. Lewis, Jr. taught history and government at my high school for many years.  He taught my sister and my former best friend.  He also taught at the local community college for about ten years.  I knew him because he was a pillar of our community-- a devout Republican who was friendly with my dad and whose wife used to sing in some of the same groups my dad did.  He had a daughter who managed the local movie theater.

I remember Mr. Lewis in the hallways at my high school.  He was always friendly and nice.  I never would have dreamed that one day, he'd be a registered sex offender.

It seems Mr. Lewis's troubles came to light in November 2001, when, at 64 years old, he was charged with taking indecent liberties with children.  Apparently, the trouble started on November 1st of that year, when Mr. Lewis was caught standing nude in his yard.  Three children were nearby and Lewis was evidently aware of them.  They said he was posing like a weightlifter and calling to them.

Mr. Lewis's punishment started off very light.  He was sentenced to 100 hours of community service, be on good behavior, have no contact with minors under age 16 for a year, and complete a sex offender evaluation.  Sounds easy enough, right?  His case was handed to a prosecutor in adjoining Mathews, County because Mr. Lewis was a friend of the Gloucester County prosecutor.

Well... four years later, Mr. Lewis got caught with his pants down again.  That time, he was exposing himself to another girl from Gloucester, although they were in Hampton when the incident occurred.  Mr. Lewis, then 69 years old, had evidently exposed himself to the girl several times during the summer of 2006.  He was in a custodial relationship with her.  I don't know what the ultimate outcome for that case was, except that I see that Mr. Lewis is now a registered sex offender and apparently lives in an apartment in Williamsburg, Virginia.

So far, I've written about two former teachers who turned out to be molesters, but sometimes even social workers end up being perverts.  A few years ago, I blogged about Arthur Bracke, a man who served as the sole social worker in Middlesex County, Virginia, for over twenty years.  In 2008, after having retired from his job, Mr. Bracke committed arson and attempted to kill one of his three adopted sons.  It later came to light that Bracke had molested an eleven year old boy at least six times.

Bracke was eventually sentenced to 39 years in a Virginia prison, but he died in March 2013.  He was 66 years old and it was said that his death was due to "natural causes".

It's really troubling to me that I can now list three cases of men entrusted with the care of children who turned out to be criminals.  I certainly know that not every guy out there is a creep, but these stories do make me kind of glad I don't have to worry about raising a child who could be victimized.  I have written a couple of times in this blog about my own experiences with the neighborhood pervert.

Like the three other men I've written about, this man was a pillar of the community-- well known and well liked by a lot of people.  He had a respected job with the county.  But he used to show me pornography on a regular basis.  Fortunately, he never touched me or exposed himself... He used to say he wouldn't do it because it was against the law.  I was too young and naive to understand that he was abusing me and my parents were too trusting... or maybe they just didn't care.  To this day, whenever I go to a Burger King, I think of this man, who used to call his penis "The Home of the Whopper".  Unbelievable.  He has been dead for a long time now.  I shudder to think of other kids he abused.  I'm pretty certain my neighbor, who was my age and died when she was 39 years old, was another one of his victims.


2 comments:

  1. I have a reasonably large number of relatives on both sides. Statistically, at least a couple of my first cousins should have been victimized by molestation. As far as I know, such is not the case, although who is to say that it didn't happen and I just don't happen to be privy to the details?

    If, by chance, we really have beaten the odds, at least half of the reason would be that, from what I've read, anyway, a whole lot of molesters are trusted adults in the lives of the children they molest, and they're often nice guys who would have established rapport and who would be able to gain the trust of children. That's where the odds begin to break in favor of the children in my family. The vast majority of my male relatives (especially on my dad's side) are such sons of bitches that even a blind, deaf, and retarded child would have the sense not to trust them.

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