96-Year-Old Man Arrested For Sexually Abusing Girls

| by Sheena Vasani
Kenneth LeRoy CollinsKenneth LeRoy Collins

Officials arrested a 96-year-old man Feb. 25 in California for allegedly engaging in inappropriate sexual activity with children.

Authorities charged Kenneth LeRoy Collins, 96, with performing lewd or lascivious acts on children under the age of 14, the Los Angeles Times reports.

Collins reportedly masturbated and touched two girls, ages 10 and 11, on top of their clothes. He allegedly also took his diaper off and exposed himself to the minors.

The incidents reportedly took place in January and February when the girls visited him at his home.

The elderly man could face up to 60 years in prison if convicted. He is currently being held on $1 million bail and is due in court March 11.

Collins is not the first man over the age of 90 to be arrested for sexual assault.

In England, Marcus Marcussen was 91 when officials sentenced him to jail in February 2015 for carrying out sex attacks against 14 boys in the 1950s, 60s, and 70s, the Daily Mail reports.

“At the age of 91 he will be the oldest person to be sent to custody for the first time,” said defense counsel Sharon Bailey. “Any custodial sentence passed on Mr. Marcussen is going to weigh far more heavily on him because of his age than it would on any other defendant.”

Marcussen was a former physical education teacher convicted of 25 charges after a former victim reported the abuse in 2012. He was sentenced to nine years in jail and is currently serving his time.

“You retain an acute intelligence and although you are physically frail, forty or fifty years ago I am sure you were a formidable presence in the classroom,” Judge Nicholas Webb said as he sentenced the man. “Standards of discipline were different then - corporal punishment was allowed - but your regime was tinged with sadism toward pupils.”

Indeed, many of his former pupils who were assaulted report experiencing significant emotional trauma as a result.

One attempted suicide while another was caned by the school’s principal when he tried reporting the sexual abuse.

“Every one of the witnesses remembered you and your deeds. Some have come to terms with their experiences better than others,” Webb added. “However, all of the men who gave evidence -- some now in their sixties and one or two in their seventies -- have been affected for the worse by their experiences literally at your hands.”

Sources: Los Angeles TimesDaily Mail  / Photo credit: Orange County Sheriff's Department via The Daily Mail 

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