Admitted child rapist may be paroled
CINCINNATI (WKRC) - The Ohio Parole Board says a man who repeatedly raped his 22-month-old son should be released from prison.
Mark Sprague is serving three life sentences for the rapes discovered during an autopsy after the boy was killed.
The Butler County prosecutor says releasing Sprague demeans the system of justice. You can tell the parole board how you feel about it as well.
The Enquirer headlines: “Autopsy reveals tot raped, father charged in abuse.”
22-month-old Christopher's mother was charged in his death. Mark Sprague admitted to the repeated rape of the little boy. The evidence was found during his autopsy.
Now, the parole board says Sprague has the support of family and community and releasing him would further the interest of justice.
"To say he has community support is little more than fiction masquerading as fact,” said Butler County Prosecutor Mike Gmoser.
The recommendation to parole Sprague will be considered by the full parole board next week.
Gmoser wants the board to reconsider some facts about the case. Sprague admitted raping
Christopher at least three times.
The last rape occurred on Nov. 13th, 1994. The next day, young Christopher was dead.
Christopher’s mother says that she hit him so hard on the back that it ripped a blood vessel near Christopher's heart. Della Sprague said he was coughing. Gmoser believes he was incessantly crying because of the rape the day before.
"It tells me that this child also died as a result of the sexual assaults, not just the mother's ‘quieting conduct’ of killing this child,” said Gmoser.
The psychiatric report that labeled Sprague a sexual predator says if he lived near another small child that "he would have a high likelihood of committing another sexually oriented offense.”
Sprague got life with the possibility of parole. The law changed in 2007.
"We can now sentence, as of January 2007, to life in prison without the possibility of parole, this case is the poster child for that determination,” said Gmoser.
When Sprague was up for parole in 2014, the board said releasing him would demean the seriousness of this offense. Gmoser says that has not changed.
The boy's mother pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. She is currently out of prison.
You can weigh in on Sprague's bid for freedom by sending a message directly to the parole board. You can send that message by following this link.