Berne, Indiana, might be in shock that its police chief, Tim Taylor, is all over the news after his son, 23-year-old Andrew Taylor, pleaded guilty to sexually molesting a 13-year-old foster child under the Taylors' care. But what's most shocking is how lenient his sentence was.
After having the victim perform oral sex on him in October, the young Taylor went to his father, telling him what had happened. The 23-year-old then turned himself over to the police.
While he's seeking counseling, it's impossible to know whether the foster child was suffering as a result of this incident as no attorney represented her nor did she appear before the court.
Taking into consideration the fact the young man turned himself in, cooperated with the police, and sought counseling promptly after the incident, the judge sentenced Andrew Taylor to only three years home detention and five years probation — no jail time.
The sexual abuse victim is now with another foster family.
During the sentencing, Jay County Prosecutor Wesley Schemenaur didn't seem to be bothered by the light sentence, saying that the fact he's the son of the police chief didn't influence the judge's reasoning.
“That’s why I was asked to be on the case as a special prosecutor because I don’t have a relationship with the Berne police department or know the Taylor family at all,” he told reporters. “I don’t feel like he was treated, from the state’s prospective, any differently than any other offender in a similar circumstance.”
During the ruling, the judge reminded Andrew Taylor to uphold his slain brother's legacy.
The elder Taylor son, whose first name wasn't mentioned, was killed while serving in the United States military in 2012. He asked the 23-year-old to honor the living and the dead by engaging in better behavior.
Regardless of how the police chief's son acted after the incident, the fact that he was simply sentenced to home arrest shows that, perhaps, rules can be bent all too easily when it comes to people with privileged backgrounds. Not a surprising outcome, but still, a frustrating one.
Banner and thumbnail image credit: Flickr user Elvert Barnes