A gay couple in Connecticut will stand trial on charges they repeatedly raped and abused two of their nine adopted boys, after breaking their plea agreement when three more boys came forward alleging abuse.
George Harasz and Douglas Wirth were arrested in 2011 and agreed to a plea deal in Feb. 2012, pleading no contest to one felony count each. The deal, which took the heavier charge of sexual assault off the table, was scrapped on Friday when three more of the children accused the couple of abuse.
Harasz and Wirth adopted three sets of triplets. After two of the boys, ages 15 and 5, accused the couple of abuse, Harasz was charged with first-degree sexual assault and Wirth was charged with third-degree sexual assault of the 15-year-old. After the plea deal, the couple would have been sentenced in Hartford Superior Court last Friday. Their attorney says they pulled out of the agreement in order to clear their names.
CBS-affiliate WFSB reported the couple was also accused of locking children in cages, but the state had trouble proving many of the statements the boys made.
The teen victim alleges that the abuse went on since he was six years old. He testified that he was touched and violated by Harasz and Wirth, and that they forced him to perform sexual acts on them. "They took turns raping me over and over," he said. "Anyone who would do this to a child is a sick, demented person."
Another adopted son, Carlos Harasz, claims that in ten years with the couple he had never seen any abuse. He said his siblings are citing abuse they received from other foster parents.
"When you go through foster care, you have a lot of issues," Carlos Harasz said. "When you've been with 20 other families who've done you wrong, somebody has to take the blame. It doesn't have to be the people who saved our lives."
After years of abuse and neglect, he says the couple provided him and his siblings "normal, painless life.”
He claims police and the Department of Children and Families was played by his brothers. “[They] took the word of an angry, damaged, disturbed boy and destroyed a family."
Both parties are expected to be back in court June 5, after the new allegations are investigated.
"I think the only proper resolution of this matter is to try it," Prosecutor David Zagaja said.
Sources: Gothamist, NY Daily News