Thu, Jan 14, 2010
Dr. Earl Bradley’s name has become “Mudd” in Lewes after he was charged last month with rape and exploitation of young children. Nearly 20 years ago, another Dr. Bradley faced similar charges in State College, Pa.
Dr. William Bradley, Earl Bradley’s uncle, faced less serious circumstances in 1991 and was found not guilty of the most serious charges. The resulting trial gives a small window into the difficulty of proving cases of this kind.
At the time of his arrest William Bradley was 86 years old. He was accused of a series of misdemeanor charges – indecent exposure, open lewdness, indecent assault and involuntary deviate sexual behavior – which were consolidated for the courts. After a bench trial in the Centre County Court of Common Pleas, Bradley was convicted of indecent exposure, two counts of indecent assault and open lewdness, but he was found not guilty of involuntary deviate sexual behavior.
According to court documents obtained by the Cape Gazette, the first series of charges occurred in August 1990 for an incident in which Bradley was accused of exposing himself to three minor girls as the girls rode their bikes past him. Testifying in his own defense, Bradley denied he exposed himself for sexual gratification.
The most serious charges involved a 4-year-old girl, also in August 1990. Bradley was accused of taking the girl into his back yard, exposing himself and asking her to perform oral sex. On the witness stand, Bradley denied all the accusations made by witnesses in the case and claimed the testimony by the 4-year-old had been coached.
He was found guilty of indecent exposure and two counts of indecent assault but found not guilty of involuntary deviate sexual behavior and two other counts of indecent assault in that instance.
Finally, Bradley was accused of exposing himself at an agricultural festival in the presence of a young girl. He was convicted of indecent exposure and open lewdness for that.
Much like his nephew 19 years later, William Bradley’s case drew a considerable amount of pre-trial publicity and his attorney requested a change of venue, which was denied by the judge.
Bradley also read a statement in which he reiterated his innocence and said he suffered from impotence and a lack of libido. After the charges came to light, Bradley said he was evicted from his home and not allowed by court order to get a motel room or rent a house.
In his statement, Bradley said he was a teacher for over 50 years at both the college and high-school levels until 1990. Bradley said he had never had a complaint of misconduct filed against him in that time.
“I feel that I’m being crucified for something I didn’t or couldn’t do to a child nor did I deliberately or intentionally expose myself,” he said.
Bradley was placed on probation and was ordered not to have any contact with minor children. The judge also ordered an evaluation but said prison time was uncalled for.
Attorneys for Bradley attempted to appeal his convictions but his appeals were denied. Bradley’s attorney in the case, Joseph Amendola, did not comment. Dr. William Bradley died in 1997.