Family Members Defend Man Sentenced To 10 Years For Child Molestation

By Emma Koch

Family Members Defend Man Sentenced To 10 Years For Child Molestation

March 27, 2013 Updated Mar 27, 2013 at 4:02 PM EDT

ALLEN COUNTY, Ind. (www.incnow.tv) -- A man who admitted to sexually abusing a young girl when she was 10 has been sentenced to 10 years behind bars. But comments made during sentencing hearing Monday revealed a very split audience.

Antonio Olivas was charged in April of last year with five Class A felonies and two Class C felonies of child molesting. He was 32 at the time the charges were brought. According to court documents he had been accused of sexual abuse ranging from fondling to intercourse with a 10-year-old girl who knew him.

Last month, Olivas pleaded guilty to a Class B felony charge. The other charges were dropped in the plea agreement but Allen County Superior Court Judge John Surbeck had sole discretion over what sentence to hand down.

According to an article in The Journal Gazette, Olivas' family members and a priest spoke in his defense and characterized him as a good father, a generous and big-hearted man who would do anything for anyone and someone who was truly remorseful for what he did.

His wife said "It's heartbreaking to see all these people turn their backs on him".

Olivas said he was sorry for the pain he caused his family but as Judge Surbeck noted, he did not show remorse for what he had done to the child.

"A violation of the child did happen," Surbeck told the gallery as he reminded them to keep in mind that Olivas had admitted he committed a sex crime.

The victim's father spoke out against those who were quick to speak for Olivas character but had done nothing to prevent the acts from occurring to protect the young girl.

"There is nothing that can be done to save her innocence," the father said. "I couldn't prevent this from happening, but I can hope it will never happen again."

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