Jeffersonville man sentenced to 100 years for molesting a child
JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) -- A judge hands down a 100-year sentence for Bernard Harris of Jeffersonville. Authorities say the 45-year-old started molesting a family member when she was just 12 years old.
"He photographed her during parts of this abuse and really subjected her to a very depraved level of abuse in the case and so getting the maximum sentence, catching 100 years on something like this, it's absolutely appropriate," said Clark Co. Chief Deputy Prosecutor Jeremy Mill.
According to a probable cause affidavit, the abuse included oral, vaginal and anal sex. Documents show it went on for more than a year before a family member found instant messages and texts suggesting a sexual relationship. Harris was arrested by Jeffersonville Police in October of 2012.
Mull says Harris pleaded guilty to 2 felony counts of child molesting. The prosecutor's office recommended the maximum sentence in court Monday, 50 years for each count.
"It is unusual to get a judge to impose these 100 year, 150 year sentences for these types crimes, a lot of judges are afraid of being reversed if they give such lengthy sentences," Mull said. He hopes this case and its century long penalty will send a message to other criminals.
"We want to let people know that if you victimize a child, you rape a child, the prosecutors office is going to try and get the stiffest sentence possible in that case," Mull said. "The victim's family was pleased that he did receive the maximum but there's no amount of years that an individual receive that can restore a childhood that has been taken from a child."
Mull says they don't believe Harris has any additional victims.
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