SIDNEY — A 50-year-old Sidney man has been sentenced to life in prison without parole for sex offenses against a six-year-girl.
It marked the first time Shelby County Common Pleas Court Judge James Stevenson has imposed a life sentence without parole that didn’t involve a murder charge.
Randy Lee Bradburn, 219 1/2 S. Miami Ave., was ordered to be incarcerated at the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction during proceedings in Shelby County Common Pleas Court, Monday, Dec. 10.
He has been housed at the Shelby County Jail for the past 251 days, since he was arrested, Feb. 12.
Bradburn pleaded guilty to one count of rape, a first-degree felony, and agreed to be determined a Tier III sex offender during a plea-negotiated case. He was represented in court by Andrew Venters of the Shelby County Public Defender’s office.
Venters asked Stevenson to consider the possibility of parole after 15 years. He stated Bradburn has a childlike mind with low intellectual function. He said Bradburn does not have the maturity level of a 50-year-old man.
The attorney said Bradburn is continuing mental health counseling after twice being found competent to stand trial. Venters said his client was “not truly evil and out to harm someone.”
Bradburn apologized for his actions, stating he was going to be writing a letter of apology by the end of the week.
The plea agreements were reached with Shelby County Prosecutor Tim Sell after a psychiatric evaluation of Bradburn was conducted. On Monday, the state was represented by Aaron Lowe, assistant Shelby County prosecutor.
Lowe stated the plea agreement was that the state would stand silent in recommending sentencing options during the proceeding. He did remind the court that Bradburn spent four years in prison in Indiana on similar charges. Lowe said after two presentence investigations, Bradburn continued to blame the six-year-old victim for enticing him.
Stevenson said he was having more difficulty with the case than any he has previously heard. He noted the age of the victim in this case while including previous convictions of related charges in Sidney and Indiana.
Stevenson said the pictures on Bradburn’s phone were “very troubling.” He also said the charges dismissed through a plea agreement indicated his ongoing behavior.
The judge said he was not convinced that Bradburn would not re-offend after 15 years. He noted it was the court’s responsibility to protect children from people like Bradburn.
With hands and legs shackled, Bradburn was remanded to the custody of the county sheriff.
Long record of offenses
In March, Bradburn was initially indicted on two counts of rape, both first-degree felonies, and gross sexual imposition, a third-degree felony.
One rape charge accused Bradburn of engaging in sexual conduct with a six-year-old from March through June 2016. The second rape charge indicated he also committed sexual conduct with a seven-year-old girl from September through December 2016.
The gross sexual imposition case accused him of having sexual contact with an eight-year-old girl, Oct. 31, 2017.
On Feb. 15, he was indicted on 10 counts of pandering sexually oriented material involving a minor, all fourth-degree felonies.
He was charged for having pornographic images on his cell phone involving a prepubescent girl having sexual relations with an adult male. The offenses reportedly occurred in Sidney between Dec. 31, 2017, and Feb. 9, according to authorities.
Indiana prison term
According to online records, Bradburn has two previous sex crime convictions, one of which resulted in his being registered as a sex offender in Indiana.
On May 23, 2000, Bradburn, a resident of Portland, Indiana, at the time, was charged with three counts of child molesting in Wells County Superior Court. Eventually convicted of gross sexual imposition, Bradburn was ordered to register as a sex offender for two years.
On June 13, 2017, Bradburn, living at 212 Washington St., Sidney, at the time, was found guilty of one count of criminal child enticement, a first-degree misdemeanor, in Sidney Municipal Court. A second charge was dropped through plea negotiations.
The report indicated that on April 27, 2017, Bradburn had lured two girls, ages 4 and 8, into his apartment without permission of the parents. He was arrested, May 2 that year, by Sidney Police and charged with two counts of criminal child enticement. At the time, authorities considered the crimes as felonies due to Bradburn’s having a similar conviction in Indiana.
On May 10, prosecutors reported they would be unable to charge Bradburn with felonies based on an out-of-state conviction and refiled the case as first-degree misdemeanors.
At his sentencing, Bradburn pleaded no contest to the amended charge and was sentenced to 150 days in jail, fined $250 and assessed court costs. He was also ordered to have no contact with the victims or their families and to have no unsupervised contact with other juveniles under the age of 14 years.
Bradburn was placed on two years of probation, which he was still serving at the time of his arrest in February.
The writer is a regular contributor to the Sidney Daily News.