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Wasilla man sentenced to 161 years for sexually abusing his children

Zaz Hollander

A Palmer Superior Court judge this week sentenced a 54-year-old Wasilla man to more than 160 years in prison for sexually abusing his two daughters over more than 10 years.

The convicted man abused two of his children -- a biological daughter and a stepdaughter -- for 12 years starting when the youngest was 9 years old, according to court documents. His charges reflect two victims, but prosecutors say the abuse included a third. (Although the man is identified in court records, it is the policy of Alaska Dispatch News not to publish identifying information about victims of sexual abuse.)

A jury in March convicted the man of 29 counts of first-degree sexual abuse of a minor and one count of incest.

Superior Court Judge Eric Smith during Tuesday's sentencing hearing in Palmer said the defendant put his children "through a nightmare" for the length of the abuse they suffered from someone they trusted, Alaska State Troopers said in an online report posted Thursday.

Smith handed down a sentence of 268 1/2 years with 161 1/2 to serve and 107 suspended, according to a summary of the sentencing proceedings on file at Palmer's courthouse. He also imposed 15 years of probation and a $2,500 fee to pay legal costs.

During the hearing, the public defender told the judge "it is untrue the things they said he did and did not do," the summary shows. Smith told him it was "too late" to raise those points and they should have been addressed earlier in the process. The public defender, Jeff Bradley, said his client maintains his "general denial," the document shows.

The convicted man subjected a biological daughter and stepdaughters to "extensive sexual, emotional, and physical abuse," assistant district attorney Trina Sears wrote in a pre-sentencing memo.

Sears said the "physical and mental manipulation of his children" allowed the abuse to continue, unreported, for more than a decade. She described the man calling the girls derogatory names, telling them they had no one to turn to besides him, and physically assaulting them.

The prosecutor argued for a sentence of 162 1/2 years to serve plus 105 years suspended based on the egregious nature of the conduct, nearly the sentence Smith handed down. Sears in her memo referenced a new sentencing scheme approved by the Alaska Legislature that in many cases substantially increased sentences for sexual offenders even without "aggravating factors" like prior criminal history.

Bradley, the public defender, filed a recommendation for 30 years with five suspended.

Contact Zaz Hollander at zhollander@adn.com.

 


By Zaz Hollander
zhollander@adn.com