Was Mark O'Brien single? Is it reasonable to have single men as foster parents? I'm sure there are some fine ones but the opportunity for abuse would seem to be much higher. At the very least they need more diligent vetting and monitoring.
SPRINGFIELD, Missouri – A former foster father found guilty of sexually abusing three children in his care will spend over five decades in prison for the crimes.
Mark D. O’Brien, 43, of Republic, Mo., was sentenced Friday to 55 years in prison for the charges of abuse of a child and six counts of first-degree statutory sodomy.
O’Brien was convicted on Aug. 13, 2014 after a four-day bench trial of sexually abusing three of his foster children between 2007 and 2010.
According to Greene County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Patterson, two of the victims were under the age of 12 and the third was 14 years old.
During the trial, the judge heard from three of O’Brien’s victims.
One victim described being forced to sleep outside at night without blankets or shelter after certain incidents of abuse. The other two said they were offered bribes or rewards in exchange for the abuse.
Patterson says none of the victims told anyone about the abuse until they were out of O’Brien’s home.
In 2010, the abuse was reported after O’Brien tried to make contact with one of the victims, despite the child’s parents’ attempts to sever contact. The victim then told his parents about the abuse. The other two victims came forward during the investigation.
At the sentencing hearing, the victims spoke out and their families detailed the negative effects the victims suffered from the abuse.
At the end of the hearing, Judge Calvin Holden sentenced O’Brien to a total of 55 years in the Missouri Department of Corrections and denied probation.
God bless you Judge Holden.