Father, 4 sons in court on sex charges

LEXINGTON, Mo., Nov. 12 (UPI) -- Five men accused of heinous sex crimes against children in their family appeared in a Missouri courtroom Thursday for a bail hearing.

Lafayette County Judge John Frerking set bond at $75,000 for Burrell Mohler Sr., 77; $50,000 for Burrell Mohler Jr., 53; $35,000 for David A. Mohler, 52; $30,000 for Roland Mohler, 48; and $50,000 for Jared Mohler, 47.


The elderly father and four middle-age sons appeared in court without attorneys, shackled and dressed in orange jumpsuits. The judge said they would have to apply for public defenders, KMBC-TV, Kansas City, reported.

Their next court appearance will be next Tuesday.

The Mohlers are accused of sex crimes against children from 1988 to 1995. They were arrested Tuesday on felony charges, including rape, use of a child in a sexual performance, forcible compulsion and sodomy.

The investigation involves several jurisdictions and stretched as far away as Lamoni, Iowa, where one of the suspects lived, police said. In her statement, one victim said she was forced to "marry" her uncle in mock weddings at least three times.

While the men were living in Independence and Columbia, Mo., and Lamoni, Iowa, the crimes allegedly occurred on the Mohler farm near Bates City, about 30 miles east of Kansas City.


Meanwhile, police said authorities searched for at least one body in the case. Lafayette County Sheriff Kerrick Alumbaugh said investigators were searching the Bates City property, saying officials think at least one body was hidden there, KSHB-TV, Kansas City, Mo., reported late Wednesday.

Investigators also were looking for a glass jar or jars that may be holding notes from the victims. Police said the suspects told the children to record their experiences, put the pieces of paper in jars, then bury the jars to symbolize suppressing the memory, the television station reported.

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