Home Featured Update: Former State Senate candidate Bodenweiser released on $250,000 bond

Update: Former State Senate candidate Bodenweiser released on $250,000 bond

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Bodenweiser. Photo courtesy of the Delaware Attorney General’s office.

Former legislative candidate Eric Bodenweiser,  53, of Georgetown, Del.,   was released on bond, after being  indicted on more than 100  child  sex crime charges  dating from the late ’80s and early ’90s.

The  indictment consists of 113  counts, including 39 counts of Unlawful Sexual Intercourse First Degree and 74 counts of Unlawful Sexual Contact Second Degree. The alleged victim, based on court filings, was a young boy at the time.

WXDE morning host Dan Gaffney said he interviewed the alleged victim who was nine at the time the incidents took place.

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The investigation which led to the  charges was initiated by Delaware State Police several weeks ago after police received information that Bodenweiser had sexually abused a child.

The indictment charges Bodenweiser with the sexual abuse of a juvenile victim between October, 1987 and August, 1990. Immediately after  the indictment, he turned himself into State Police at the Sussex County Courthouse, was arraigned in Superior Court, and was committed to the Sussex Correctional Institution in default of $250,000 secured bail. The Cape Gazette reported Bodenweiser was released on bond.

Under the terms of the bail, he will  be monitored by GPS device, with pre-trial supervision by Probation and Parole.

Bodenweiser had earlier withdrawn from a state Senate race after gaining the Republican nomination.

A conservative Republican, Bodenweiser had drawn support from former U.S. Senate candidate Christine O’Donnell, who, according to published  reports, spoke at a fund-raiser for Bodenweiser. Bodenwiser’s campaign website stated that he founded the first Tea Party organization in Sussex County.

On the  website, Bodenweiser described himself as a “Fiscal and Social Conservative Republican. I’m a devoted husband, father, grandfather and Christian who feels that our state and nation is on a socialistic path, the consequences of which will impact our economic and moral well being for generations.”

In a sign of a family rift,  Bodenweiser’s  brother  started a website, urging voters to not  cast their ballots  for his sibling. Bodenweiser was a retired business owner. His family operated a small chain of convenience stores and coin-0perated laundries  in Sussex County.

As news of the indictment spread, a few Facebook postings hinted that the indictment was politically motivated, taking note of the two-decades that had elapsed since the alleged assaults took place.

After Bodenweiser withdrew from the race, Republicans launched efforts to put  Brian Pettyjohn, of Georgetown,  on the November ballot. He had been pursuing a write-in effort in the Senate race. Pettyjohn is a former mayor of Georgetown.

Rumors had been swirling around Bodenweiser as reports surfaced of an investigation and published reports indicated that he did not show up at Republican events for several weeks  and that State Police had launched an investigation of an undisclosed nature.

Bodenweiser had earlier defeated incumbent Republican Joe Booth for the Senate seat. Democrat Jane Hovington is also seeking the seat in a district that has been solidly Republican.

Sussex County has been rocked by child sexual abuse cases, the most notorious being pediatrician Earl Bradley, who is now in prison. A pending settlement involving Beebe Medical Center and Bradley’s victims totals $123 million. Another case involved a former football coach.

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