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Convicted pedophile gets 7.5 years

| July 23, 2008 at 06:03 pm

A convicted pedophile looked very calm as he was sentenced to 12 years in prison Wednesday.

Otto Edward Schneider, 70, was found guilty earlier this year of sexually assaulting three girls, two of whom were less than 10 years old at the time of the attacks. Schneider video taped himself raping the children. The sexual assaults occurred between January 2001 and March 2006, when he was arrested. The dates are documented by Schneider’s hundreds of hours of explicit videos.

Two of the girls involved were eight and 10 years old when the assaults started. The third was believed to be 13. The names of the victims are protected by the court and cannot be published.

Justice Robert Johnston said the young ages of the victims and the emotional damage resulting from Schneider’s actions were major factors in the length of the sentence.

“I do not see how any sentence I impose is going to make any (positive) difference to the victims or to the community,” Johnston read from his sentencing report.

Schneider will serve seven years and five months of his 12-year sentence, reduced to take in account time served while awaiting trial.

– ecardone@saanichnews.com

Fighting pedophilia starts with prevention

| at 08:21 am

Imagine this scenario: A convicted pedophile is on probation pending an appeal to a higher court. Part of the conditions of his probation is that he is not alone with youths under 18. One day, a neighbor sees him through an open garage door with two teenage boys, their mother was on the scene but she leaves. The neighbor spots the boys with the pedophile and phones the police. The police come and arrest the man.

The tragedy of the Bennett girl has left not only the people of Randoph in deep grief but also the entire state of Vermont. We have blamed lawmakers for not having tougher laws and the Department of Corrections, police and probation officers for failing to do their job. We scream for Jessica’s Law, more jail time. We blame and blame and blame others. We never look at our own culpability and ask, “Could I have intervened somehow and stopped this hideous crime?”

For evil to exist is for good people to do nothing. As parents we have to take responsibility for our own children. We cannot relegate this responsibility to others. We have to know what our children are doing, who they are with, and if they are in a safe environment. As a society we have to find the courage and fortitude to stand up for those moral values we believe in. (more…)