Bradley waives preliminary hearing

State’s next step: indictment
January 15, 2010

Dr. Earl Bradley has waived his preliminary hearing, scheduled Thursday, Jan. 14 at the Court of Common Pleas in Georgetown.

Bradley also waived a scheduled bond review, although he still has the option of seeking a bond review at a later date. Bradley’s attorney interviewed Bradley and entered Bradley’s motions into the record. Bradley is being held at the James T. Vaughn Correctional Center in Smyrna on $2.9 million cash bond.

Last week, the Delaware Attorney General’s Office filed a motion in Superior Court to have Bradley tested for the HIV virus.

Paula Ryan, chief prosecutor for Sussex County, said the Jan. 8 motion was granted without opposition. The request to test is allowed under state law.

“It’s routine in cases involving sexual abuse allegations to have that testing conducted. It’s just one of the steps we take as part of the process to make sure we have all the information we need,” Ryan said.

She said Bradley’s test would be handled through the Department of Correction, with correctional medical personnel obtaining his sample.

Jason Miller, spokesman for the Department of Justice, said he did not know when Bradley’s test would be completed, but under Delaware law, the results would not be made public, although the results can be released to victims.

He said the next step in the prosecution of Bradley is to seek an indictment from a grand jury. There is no timeframe on when the state will present the case to the grand jury, Miller said.

Bradley has been charged with more than 30 felony counts of rape and exploitation of young children. All Bradley victims described to date in court papers have been girls, but the attorney general’s office has so far declined to rule out male victims. The parent of at least one male patient of Bradley said police asked her for a photograph of her son.

At a press conference shortly after Bradley’s arrest, a prosecutor said police were attempting to identify children shown in videos seized when police executed a search warrant on Bradley’s property.

Attorney General Joseph “Beau” Biden III said the investigation of Bradley is ongoing and investigators are still identifying the entire universe of Bradley’s patients in order to identify alleged victims.

Biden has also ordered the State Solicitor to conduct an examination of whether any individuals or entities failed to report allegations of misconduct by Bradley in 2005 to the Division of Professional Regulation or the Board of Medical Practice. Bradley was investigated then by the Milford Police Department but no charges were filed.

“Any entity who had knowledge of improper behavior had an obligation to make a disclosure to the division or to the licensing board,” Biden said.

If convicted of the charges, Bradley could face up to life in prison.

Police say the parent of any child who they believe could have been a victim of abuse should contact 1-800-842-8461.