Men plead guilty in Canton indecent assault
TOWANDA - Two men who had been charged with having improper sexual contact with a Canton man who suffers from a mental disability recently pleaded guilty in Bradford County Court in Towanda.
The third man charged in the incident, meanwhile, has died, the Bradford County District Attorney has confirmed.
Randy Vern Foust, 51, of Canton, and Jared Matthew Strunk, 42, of Grover, were charged with involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, according to the papers filed by Trooper David Pelachick. Pelachick said the victim's mental disability renders him incapable of consent. The victim reportedly has an IQ of 40.
Ronald Middaugh of Canton was also charged, but both District Attorney Dan Barrett and Bradford County Coroner Tom Carman confirmed that he has died. Carman said Middaugh passed away Jan. 10.
The incidents took place from April 1 through July 30, 2012, at Cedar Ridge Apartments in Canton, police said.
According to District Attorney Dan Barrett, Jared Strunk entered a plea of Nolo Contendere (no contest) to Indecent Assault, a misdemeanor of the first degree. Strunk will be sentenced following preparation of a pre-sentence report by the Bradford County Probation Department. A no-contest plea is entered where the defendant cannot recall the event but will be held guilty and sentenced. In an affidavit, it was noted that Strunk denied having any sexual contact with the victim.
Randy Foust entered a plea of guilty to Indecent Assault, a misdemeanor of the first degree, according to Barrett. Foust will be sentenced on April 28, following preparation of a pre-sentence report by the Bradford County Probation Department and an evaluation by the State Sexual Offender Assessment Board.
Becky Spencer of Granville Summit, the victim's mother, was present when both men pleaded guilty.
"I'm glad to see them plead," she said. "I would like to see them get the maximum for what they pleaded for."
She thought the indecent assault charge was too light.
Her son, the victim, is 28 years old.
"I'm not quite sure he understands the whole process; he just wants to see them punished, and he would like to see it sooner than later," she said. She said her son thinks the men who pleaded guilty in the incident "should go to jail for a long time."
Eric Hrin can be reached at (570) 297-5251; firstname.lastname@example.org.