Michael Terpening Sentenced: 10 to 15 Years
The judge sentenced Michael Terpening to 10 to 15 years in state prison.
Before hearing his fate, he gave an impassioned plea before the court.
Terpening, who’s convicted of eight sex crimes involving several teenage boys, urged the judge to place him in a community-based treatment program as punishment and rehabilitation.
“I don`t want to go to prison. You can give me five years afterwards, you`re never going to see me in this courtroom again. I`m telling you. I`m promising you. I ask for you to please consider this,” he said.
Barry county judge Amy McDowell denied his request.
Terpening is a former youth home director, who sexually abused at-risk teenagers under his care, in Bellevue back in 2011.
Before his trial this past October, Terpening turned down a plea deal from the state attorney general that may have given him less time behind bars.
During his trial, he said his accusers misinterpreted his physical contact as inappropriate.
However, when witnesses and victims took the stand, they say Terpening offered to buy them cigars in exchange for seeing his genitalia. They say he exposed himself to the teens several times.
During this sentencing, Terpening said the past 19 months have been a nightmare.
“It’s hard what I’ve had to go through. I’m not just talking about me, I feel bad for my wife, I feel bad for my kids. I feel bad for everybody. People have called my family, harassing them,” Terpening said.
He continued, “They’ve called threaten to kill me. They’ve shot our horse. Nothing’s ever been done because in the eyes of the court, the eyes of the police I was guilty, in my opinion, from day one.”
Before sentencing him to 10 to 15 years in prison, the judge reminded Terpening of his past.
She says he sexually assaulted a 12 year old several years ago, as well as a 10 year old in 2003.
In this case, Judge McDowell says Terpening abused his position as a youth home director and in a letter he wrote to the court he doesn’t properly address the victims.
“That long standing pattern would suggest that you are a danger to the community, coupled with the fact that I read your letter, you don’t express any remorse for the victims, all you talk about is yourself and what you’re going to do,” McDowell said.
The court also discussed two other charges that are pending against Terpening. One is for criminal sexual conduct and another is for insurance fraud, which stems from allegations in February 2011.