Topic: child molestation
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September 19, 2013 at 10:11 AM
UPDATE 3:45 p.m.: Darby Gerking, known around the area as the children’s music performer “Mr. Darby,” has been charged with two counts of first-degree child molestation, domestic violence.
Gerking, 57, was booked into the King County Jail on Tuesday, but has since bailed out.
According to charges filed by King County Senior Deputy Prosecutor Carol Spoor, Gerking inappropriately touched two girls he knew several years ago. Bellevue police do not believe there are other victims
On Gerking’s website said that “Mr. Darby’s Music with Friends” was established nearly 15 years ago. Gerking travels to nearly a dozen schools and child care centers in the Seattle-area each week where he plays an array of musical instruments, sings, reads books and performs with puppets, according to the site.
ORIGINAL POST: A Bellevue man who works as a children’s music performer has been arrested for suspected child molestation.
He was booked into the King County Jail on Tuesday for the alleged molestation and on Wednesday, King County District Court Judge Arthur Chapman found probable cause to hold him on $150,000 bail, according to court documents. The man posted bond last night and was released.
Dan Donohoe, spokesman for King County Prosectuor Dan Satterberg, said his office could file felony charges as early as today.
The man is accused of molesting two young girls between 2008 and 2010, according to a Bellevue police report. The girls told police that the man touched them inappropriately, when they were each nine or 10 years old, according to the report.
Bellevue police Officer Seth Cyler said detectives do not believe there are other victims.
May 10, 2013 at 2:39 PM
A 32-year-old former teacher at a Seattle private school was charged this week with four counts of first-degree child molestation, accused of sexually touching two of his young students during classes when other children were present, according to King County prosecutors.
Jordan Eareckson Murray — who went by the honorary title of “Rabbi” at the Torah Day School in Columbia City — was arrested May 3 and spent less than 48 hours in the King County Jail before posting a $100,000 bond, according to jail and court records.
Murray, a married father of three, does not have a criminal history, said Dan Donohoe, spokesman for King County Prosecutor Dan Satterberg.
Formal charges were filed Tuesday, accusing Murray of touching the girls under their clothes numerous times since the middle of the school year. Other students in Murray’s first- and second-grade classes were apparently unaware of the behavior because Murray’s desk blocked their view, charging papers say.
The two girls and at least four other students in Murray’s classes, all ages 6 and 7, routinely complained of anxiety, headaches and stomach aches, but the girls’ parents said the children were fine and acted normally after being sent home early, the papers say.
The two girls, a 6- and 7-year-old, were playing together at the younger girl’s house and told the girl’s 12-year-old sister — who is also a student at the school — that “Rabbi Murray puts his hands in their pants,” charging papers say. The girls were scared and confused and didn’t know why it was happening, the papers say. The sister brought the girls to her mother, and they disclosed the alleged abuse, according to the charges.
The 12-year-old had baby-sat Murray’s children in the past, the papers say.
Another 6-year-old also described sitting on Murray’s lap or standing between his legs, and said other girls in her class also sat on his lap, according to the charging papers. The girl said Murray often hugged her from behind and touched her over her clothing, the papers say.
The Seattle Police Department received two referrals from Child Protective Services on April 23 and launched an investigation, the papers say. Murray, who has since lost his job at the school, declined to provide a statement to police, charging papers say.
“The defendant is a clear danger to children given the circumstances of this crime where he abused his position of trust as a first and second grade teacher, secretly molesting these girls in class in front of others,” Senior Deputy Prosecutor Carol Spoor wrote in the charging documents.
Murray is scheduled to be arraigned May 20.
January 31, 2013 at 10:33 PM
A convicted child molester has been arrested following allegations he sexually assaulted an 11-year-old girl at the public library in Enumclaw on Wednesday, according to the Enumclaw Police Department.
The girl had been at the library with her father around noon, when she decided to go out alone to their car in the parking lot for a snack. While she was in the car, Travis Martin Lear, 25, allegedly approached her and threatened to kill her if she didn’t go with him into the library bathroom.
Fearing for her life, the girl complied. Inside the bathroom, Lear locked the door, according to the police department’s statement of probable cause. He then allegedly touched her inappropriately and, according to the report, told her “he didn’t like what he was doing, but had urges.” He then allowed her to leave, the statement says.
Lear allegedly told the girl he’d kill her if she told anyone. But she immediately told her father what had happened and pointed Lear out to him, according to police. Lear at first denied the incident, police say, then he fled.
Police showed the father an image of Lear, and he confirmed it was the same man. Officers found Lear at his mother’s house and arrested him. He’s being held in King County Jail for investigation of first-degree child molestation and first-degree kidnapping.
Lear has has previously been convicted of third-degree rape of a child and third-degree attempted rape of a child.
October 17, 2012 at 10:22 AM
The Associated Press
EVERETT — A Sultan woman who appeared with a 7-year-old child in pornographic pictures pleaded guilty Tuesday in Snohomish County Superior Court to child molestation and sexual exploitation of a minor.
Twenty-three-year-old Caitlin Ferry faces more than seven years in prison when she is sentenced Nov. 19 in Everett.
The Daily Herald reports she’s the former girlfriend of Enrique Sanchez-Leon, a convicted child rapist and child pornographer who was sentenced earlier this year to 35 years in prison. Detectives found photos of Ferry and the child on his computers.
Ferry was arrested in January but had been released on bail until August. She was jailed after prosecutors discovered she was working at a “kiddieland” booth at the Evergreen State Fair in Monroe.
April 13, 2012 at 2:45 PM
A man who pleaded guilty to a series of attacks in which he grabbed female joggers and buried his face in their buttocks in West Seattle’s Lincoln Park was sentenced today to just over 9 years in prison.
Duane E. Starkenburg, 47, pleaded guilty last month to two counts of second-degree assault and one count of third-degree assault with sexual motivation for assaulting three joggers in August and December 2010 and January 2011. He also pleaded guilty to a charge of second-degree child molestation in an unrelated case.
In the August 2010 attack, a woman said a man grabbed her hips and planted his face in her buttocks while she jogged in the park, according to a Seattle police report. The woman told police the man said it was an accident.
In the December 2010 attack, a woman told police she was walking up some stairs to the parking lot in Lincoln Park when a man asked for her help, saying he had injured his shin. She let him hold on to her shoulder and helped him up, the report says.
As they reached a landing, “the man got behind the woman and grabbed her by the hips,” it says. The woman screamed as he pushed his face into her buttocks, according to the report.
The man claimed it was an accident.
The most recent attack happened just before 4 p.m. on Jan. 25, 2011, as a 27-year-old woman was jogging on Lincoln Park’s waterfront trail. She told police a man ran up behind her and attempted to tackle her, throwing his arms around her legs. The woman, who was not injured, was able to break free and get away.
Starkenburg was arrested a short time later as he attempted to cross Fauntleroy Way Southwest, according to police.
Following Starkenburg’s arrest, the two other women identified him from a photo montage, police said.
After a court appearance, Starkenburg told the media he was “outraged” by his arrest and insisted he had slipped in the January 2011 incident. “It’s not like I’m this guy who puts on makeup and is running around attacking women,” he said.
The child molestation charge stems from the follow-up investigation into the Lincoln Park attacks.
A Seattle police detective interviewed a woman who claimed Starkenburg had molested her daughter when the girl was 9 or 10. The victim, now 20, told detectives that Starkenburg offered “a massage” and then molested her.
November 3, 2011 at 11:31 AM
A Kenmore man accused of exposing himself to children in Seattle pleaded not guilty this morning to one count of second-degree child molestation and five counts of indecent exposure, according to the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
Jesse Kaein Drugge , 29, remains in the King County Jail in lieu of $250,000 bail.
Drugge, who also goes by the names Jesse Drugger and Jesse Trulson, was arrested Oct. 21 at his home in Kenmore. Police allege he exposed himself at least five times to boys and girls between the ages of 11 and 16 at a school, bus stop and playfield. The incidents happened in late September and early October, according to police.
Because Drugge was convicted of indecent exposure in 2005, each of the new indecent-exposure charges is a felony offense. He is also under investigation by Seattle police in connection with two other indecent-exposure cases, charging papers say.
Drugge’s next court hearing is scheduled for Nov. 15.
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The Today File is a general news blog featuring real-time coverage of Seattle and the Northwest. It is reported by the news staff of The Seattle Times and edited by Assistant Metro Editor Nick Provenza.
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