A former county sheriff's deputy has been given a life sentence in prison for abusing children.
The 26-year-old was convicted in November 2019 for "the transportation of minors with intent to engage in criminal sexual activity."
The abuse came to light when a member of a church in New Mexico reported that a fellow member identified as the defendant, had sexually abused a child.
The defendant, who served as volunteer in the children's ministry, admitted to "unlawfully touching an eight-year-old child on multiple occasions."
He also owned a Tae Kwon Do (TKD) studio where he instructed several young students. He admitted "engaging in illicit sexual conduct with a 13-year-old at the studio and with another TKD student between the ages of nine and ten.
The defendant also drove two minors from New Mexico to Farwell, at his residence, to spend the night. While the children were in his home, the perpetrator performed sexual acts on the 10-year-old and the 11-year-old. He also gave the 10-year-old pills to induce unconsciousness, according to court documents.
Investigators of the case determined that the defendant had abused and sexually exploited seven children.
During sentencing hearing, the court how the accused had leveraged power and trust through his positions as a sheriff's deputy, childcare volunteer and Tae Kwon Do instructor.
According to the victims, they were afraid of him because he was "big" and they thought he might "hurt" them. Matthew Watkins "Former Parmer County sheriff's deputy gets life sentence for preying on children" abc7amarillo.com (Jun. 12, 2020)