Crane Sent Directly to Jail

Crane Sent Directly to Jail

Former teacher hoped to remain free to continue treatment after plea in sex offenses.

Defense attorney Steven David Stone called his client Richard E. Crane Jr. "a person who desperately needed help."

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Michael Ben'Ary said the "community as a whole was victimized [by Crane] over a long period of time."

Fairfax County Circuit Court Judge Randy I. Bellows said Crane's crimes were of "stunning gravity, and a predatory nature of the gravest concern."

On Tuesday, May 24, Crane, 43, entered an Alford plea on six counts against him, including possession of child pornography, production of child pornography and aggravated sexual battery. A defendant who enters an Alford plea admits that the prosecution has enough evidence to convict, without admitting guilt. The court may then impose a sentence as if the defendant had been convicted of the crime.

At the end of Crane's arraignment hearing, Bellows revoked Crane's bond, and Crane was handcuffed and led to the Fairfax County Detention Center. He is scheduled to be sentenced in the fall.

"He apologizes for the deep hurt caused to the community," said Stone, following the arraignment hearing in Fairfax County Circuit Court.

<b>CRANE SECRETLY</b> videotaped boys changing clothes in the men's locker room of the Oak Marr Recreational Center in Oakton, according to Ben'Ary, the prosecuting attorney.

Crane was arrested in September 2004, after police investigated reports of suspicious activity at the recreation center. Hiding a video camera inside a gym bag, Crane videotaped naked boys inside the locker room, Ben'Ary said.

Crane was taken to the Fair Oaks District Station, where he told police the primary focus of his videotaping was "boys 10 years of age or younger," according to court documents. Crane also told police he had been videotaping boys at several recreation centers in Fairfax County over the last year.

During a search of his Burke home the next day, police discovered about 20 disks of scenes from the video footage and 1,000 computer images of child pornography. Some disks were labeled "Oak Marr," according to Ben'Ary.

Ben'Ary requested that Crane's bond be revoked.

<b>FOLLOWING HIS ARREST,</b> Crane cooperated with police and sought help, Stone said.

Crane has received shots to produce chemical castration and received weekly testosterone receptor blockers at the National Institute for the Study, Prevention and Treatment of Sexual Trauma in Baltimore, Stone said during the hearing.

Stone asked Bellows to allow Crane to remain free on bond, so he could continue treatment at the institute.

"We will present a different person [at sentencing] if you'll allow him to continue the treatment," Stone said.

Stone said Crane moved from Fairfax County to his parent's home in Winchester and sold his Burke house. After his arrest, Crane left his job as band teacher and music director of Langston Hughes Middle School.

Crane has had no contact with juveniles and has been doing volunteer work at his family's church, pertaining only to adults, according to Stone.

Judge Bellows revoked Crane's bond. He told Crane sentencing guidelines for some of the charges against him range from one to 20 years in prison.