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Bail for 2 of 3 charged in Iowa child sex abuse case

This news story was published on January 25, 2012.
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Mark Newman, Ottumwa Courier, Iowa –

ELDON — Eldon police say two of the three people taken into custody on charges of child endangerment and sexual abuse are out on bail.

Chief Kris Metcalf of the Eldon Police Department said his investigation into allegations of sex crimes resulted in charges being filed against three members of the same family in Eldon.

Jerme Hopwood has been charged with five counts second-degree sexual abuse, a Class B felony and one count of indecent contact with a minor. Mark Hopwood has been charged with one count of second degree sexual abuse, while their mother, Lucinda Hopwood, was arrested on one count of child endangerment.

Jerme Hopwood and Lucinda Hopwood are both free on bond. Mark Hopwood remains in custody in the Wapello County Jail. Arrest reports on the three were not immediately available.

Chief Metcalf told the Courier on Saturday that before charging the three, he conducted a lengthy investigation coordinated with DHS and the Child Protection Center. Though Eldon handled the police investigation, the arrests Wednesday were made by Metcalf with the assistance of the Wapello County Sheriff’s Office.

He said the three girls allegedly assaulted are with their respective parents.

“The kids and their family are being supported by DHS, which does a great job of coordinating services,” said Metcalf.

Though most details are not available pending a trial, the chief said the alleged incident came to the attention of authorities when DHS was contacted by mandatory reporters at the Cardinal School District.

“They did just what they were supposed to do,” said Metcalf, who also holds a degree and license as a professional social worker.

Though sex crimes are a difficult topic to discuss, he said, as parents, we have a duty to protect our children, and as a law enforcement officer, that duty is increased.

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2 Responses to Bail for 2 of 3 charged in Iowa child sex abuse case

  1. Avatar

    Tom Reply Report comment

    January 26, 2012 at 4:08 pm

    If they were my kids the only trial would be mine, for murder.

  2. Avatar

    jane Reply Report comment

    January 26, 2012 at 2:23 pm

    These very sick individuals will probably get a slap on their hand…if I was the victims parents, someone would be getting their hands amputated. Or we need to bring back public hangings