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Published: Thursday, 10/14/2010

Ex-youth leader gets 35 years for boys' sex abuse

BY ERICA BLAKE
BLADE STAFF WRITER

Instead, he betrayed that trust, victimized two boys, and created physical and psychological harm, a Lucas County Common Pleas Court judge said Wednesday.

The former youth football league commissioner was sentenced to 35 years in prison for engaging in multiple sex acts with two young boys over a period of a year.

He was also labeled a sexual offender. Once released from prison he will be required to register for the rest of his life.

"The parents trusted you and, moreover, they trusted you with their children. You violated that trust," Judge Linda Jennings said Wednesday.

"You took the innocence of these children," she added. "…The physical harm you caused will heal; the psychological harm is immeasurable."

Millhoan, 43, who worked with youths for more than a decade, was convicted of engaging in several sexual acts with two boys, ages 11 and 13.

Assistant County Prosecutor Jennifer Lambdin said Millhoan engaged in sex acts with the boys several times between Jan. 1, 2009, and Dec. 28, 2009, at his home on North Summit Street.

Millhoan threatened the victims with comments such as "death will come to you," if they resisted or told anyone what happened, Ms. Lambdin said.

The abuse eventually surfaced when one of the boys admitted what occurred after he had begun to act out.

The grandfather of one of the victims spoke in court about how his young grandson had once been "smart, funny, and fun to be around." Those qualities turned to violence, anger, and poor grades and disciplinary problems in school, he said.

"Mr. Millhoan has caused nothing but pain and suffering to my grandson and to the rest of my family," he said. "… I think with David locked up in jail, in prison, my grandson and my family will begin to heal."

Family members declined to speak after the sentencing.

Millhoan entered an Alford plea Sept. 21 to three counts of rape, four counts of gross sexual imposition, and two counts of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor.

Under Alford pleas, defendants do not explicitly admit their guilt, but acknowledge that prosecutors have enough evidence to convict them. The court treats the plea as a guilty plea.

Judge Jennings sentenced him to nine years in prison for each of the rape offenses, four years for each count of gross sexual imposition, and 17 months for each count of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor. Some of the sentences were ordered served concurrently to equal 35 years behind bars.

At the time of the offenses, Millhoan was commissioner of the South Toledo Area Recreation Society football league, which has more than a dozen football teams with more than 600 players ages 9 to 14. He stepped down from his post about three weeks before he was indicted Feb. 12.

Millhoan did not speak in court before he was sentenced. Attorney Jane Roman said that her client intended to appeal the sentence.

Assistant County Prosecutor Rob Miller said the state was "very satisfied" with the length of Millhoan's sentence. Noting Millhoan's involvement in the community organization, Mr. Miller said the two boys had additional pressure to comply with Millhoan's demands.

He acknowledged that there was an allegation that Millhoan used a switchblade in his threats to the boys.

"It's a sufficient amount of time he's facing but more importantly, there are two victims in this case and perhaps this will bring them some closure," he said.

Contact Erica Blake at:

eblake@theblade.com

or 419-213-2134.



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