Crime

He was hired to care for a developmentally disabled teen. Instead, he took nude photos

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Learn direct ways to talk with kids from the non-profit Darkness to Light that is committed to empowering adults to prevent child sexual abuse.

A former caregiver is going to prison for sexually abusing and taking nude pictures of a developmentally disabled teen.

Concepcion I. Suarez, 57, faces a recommended sentence of one year and two months in prison.

The Kennewick man on Wednesday entered an “In Re Barr” plea, which means he did not admit guilt but took a plea to a lesser substitute charge so he could receive the benefit of a deal.

The plea was to first-degree possession of depictions of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct and second-degree sexual misconduct with a minor.

He originally was charged with second-degree rape with the aggravating allegation that he used a position of trust to commit the crime.

Judge Cameron Mitchell then found Suarez guilty after reading the affidavit of probable cause based on police reports.

‘Sexual behavior’ during sleepovers

Suarez was arrested in September on allegations he sexually abused a boy several times over nearly two years.

He had worked for an in-home care provider when he cared for the young teen and another child.

The boy told his mental health therapist last summer that Suarez would “engage in sexual behavior” during a sleepover, according to court documents.

The disclosure was reported to Child Protective Services, and then passed on to the Benton County Sheriff’s Office.

The boy told a detective that he had been raped by his caregiver on several different occasions, and even gave details about the sex acts, documents said.

He also said he was made to undress so Suarez could take pictures of him.

State certification expires

The teen’s parents told investigators that they had allowed sleepovers with the caregiver.

Court documents did not identify the medical provider Suarez worked for.

The state Department of Health’s website shows Suarez’s home care aide certification expired in December 2018. There has been no enforcement action against him, according to online records.

Suarez now is being held without bail in the Benton County jail. Sentencing is set for April 10.

Kristin M. Kraemer covers the judicial system and crime issues for the Tri-City Herald. She has been a journalist for more than 20 years in Washington and California.


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