Monday, November 26, 2007

Former Tacoma Police officer, girlfriend plead guilty to child rape


TACOMA, Wash. – A man who vowed to protect the public with the Tacoma Police Department for three decades pleaded guilty Monday to charges of raping and molesting children.

Retired police officer Lee William Giles, Jr. and his girlfriend, Maureen Wear, agreed to plea deals that will send them to prison for at least 20 years.

Giles, 61, and Ware pleaded guilty to first- and second-degree child rape, first-degree child molestation and third-degree child assault.

From the very beginning, the allegations against Giles were stunning. Prosecutors say Giles repeatedly raped his own girlfriend's young son over a period of years, videotaped the crimes, and that Wear – the victim's own mother – was involved in the attacks.

Court papers indicated that other female family members were also victimized. It was Mounting, gut-wrenching evidence that would doom either defendant during a trial.

"There would have been a lot of graphic evidence if this case would have gone to trial," said prosecutor John Sheeran.

That was something Giles and Ware could not ignore.

"I think foremost in Mr. Giles mind, he did not want to put the children through a trial. There were clearly some issues that we thought could be contested during trial. We had pending motions to suppress evidence based on the search warrants, but I think this came down to he wanting to put this behind not only him, but members of his family also," said Giles' attorney, Michael Schwartz.

Sentencing for both Giles and Ware is set for about a month from now. Prosecutors say the victims themselves might be in court those days to watch the two people who terrorized them go to prison for a long time.

"Close to 20 years. Just short of 20 years to life. It's 236 months, and a lifetime sentence in the sense that the Department of Corrections has determined that it's safe to release them," said Sheeran.

Giles faced 17 different counts altogether, but because of the plea deal, that was knocked down to four counts.

Since Giles was a police officer, he most likely will not serve his prison time in a Washington state prison, but rather be sent out of state.

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