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State Seeks to Keep Pedophile Locked Up

Attorney General Jerry Kilgore has filed a motion to civilly commit convicted pedophile Brian Keith Manuel to avoid his being released into the community in September.

Manuel was convicted of aggravated sexual battery in Alexandria Circuit Court in 1997. He pled guilty to touching the buttocks of a seven-year-old boy for whom he was babysitting. The boy was the child of a couple who attended the church where Manuel was a youth pastor. Manuel was sentenced to 10 years in prison, with all but three and-a-half years suspended. He is scheduled to be released from the Coffeewood Correctional Center on September 20.

Kilgore’s motion was filed under the Sexually Violent Predators Act, which was passed by the General Assembly in 1999, but remained unfounded until this year. The Act allows for the civil commitment of offenders who are judged to be continuing threats to the community if released following the service of their criminal sentences.

“This bill has been around for a long time,” said state Del. Brian Moran (D-46) “It finally passed in 1999 after a similar Kansas law was found to be constitutional by the U. S. Supreme Court. We debated the measure extensively in the Courts and Justice Committee because several of us had concerns about the Constitutionality and about due process. But, the Supreme Court has spoken.”

Funding was required for providing a separate institution in which sexually violent offenders could be housed. “The mental health community had some reservations about placing these individuals in regular state institutions,” Moran said.

THE ACT defines a sexually violent predator as “any person who has been convicted of a sexually violent offense or has been charged with a sexually violent offense and is unrestorably incompetent to stand trial because of a mental abnormality or personality disorder, finds it difficult to control his predatory behavior which makes him likely to engage in sexually violent acts.”

Manuel has a history of sexual offenses. In 1989, he befriended a Fairfax woman who had twin boys. While babysitting, he assaulted the boys while they were showering and getting ready for bed. In 1996, after moving to Colorado with a pastor to start a new church, Manuel committed a similar offense while babysitting for a family in the area.

“Brian Keith Manuel’s favorite prey are young boys,” Kilgore said. “He is a pedophile who has repeated his crimes and would do so again if released. He is exactly the sort of predator this law was designed for.”

A qualified mental health examiner has diagnosed Manuel with pedophilia (exclusively males), a mental abnormality or personality disorder. The expert has concluded that Manuel is a sexually violent predator and is likely to commit future acts of violence. There will be a hearing on Kilgore’s motion on September 16, in Alexandria Circuit Court.