Former Ohio mayor who sexually assaulted a 4-year-old says she was a ‘willing participant’

The former mayor of Hubbard, Ohio, was convicted of sexually assaulting a 4-year-old little girl. On Monday, the Trumbull County Prosecutor’s Office said that the defendant admitted to molesting the child on several occasions.

FOX News reports that Richard Keenan was indicted last month on one count of  gross sexual imposition, eight counts of rape and 12 counts of attempted rape. Court documents revealed that Keenan, who served as the Hubbard mayor from 2010 to 2011, told his wife that he indeed did sexually assault the 4-year-old victim numerous times, and over a period of three years.

The defendant also admitted what he did to his pastor, brother, sister-in-law, and a social worker. He eventually checked into a psychiatric facility, where he allegedly blamed the child for his actions, stating that she was a “willing participant.”

On Friday, Keenan pleaded “guilty” and agreed to a life sentence with a chance for parole after 10 years. He was convicted of 20 counts of sex crimes. Keenan was allowed to walk out of court free while he awaited his sentencing, but when the prosecution strongly objected, Keenan was taken back into custody.

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“Obviously, we feel it’s inappropriate that he’s out. We feel that given the nature of the crimes and what he’s pled guilty to, the public has an interest in him being incarcerated,” said Assistant Prosecutor, Gabe Wildman.

Keenan is now being held without bond at the Trumbull County jail, awaiting his sentencing. If released from prison, he’ll be classified as a Tier III sex offender, and will be required to register with the local sheriff every 90 days, indefinitely.

Wildman was satisfied with the outcome. He said he was happy with the plea deal, which kept the victim from having to testify and relive the experience.

“I think we did the right thing by not having to bring the victim in to testify.”

[Feature Photo: Trumbull County Sheriff’s Office]