13 06 2008

Ex-con accused of abusing disabled child in his care

by Robert A. Baker

June 12, 2008


Syracuse, NY — A twice-convicted felon who was hired as a home-care worker for a disabled child in Syracuse is accused of repeatedly molesting the child in his care.

Jeffrey Seals, 47, of 214 Mountainview Ave., was charged Tuesday by Syracuse police with criminal sexual act, a felony, and endangering the welfare of a child, a misdemeanor.

The abuse occurred in 2001 and 2002 while Seals was serving as a “primary care giver” to the male child, court records state said.

The child, who is mentally disabled and required full-time care, was 13 and 14 at the times the abuse occurred, court records said.

It is the policy of The Post-Standard not to reveal the identities of victims of alleged sex crimes.

Seals engaged in sexual contact with the boy in what the boy described as an “experimental relationship,” court records state. The contact lasted “the entire length of the defendant’s stay as a care worker,” court records state.

Seals was hired privately by the family and did not work through any health-care agencies, Sgt. Tom Connellan, speaking for city police, said. The abuse occurred in the child’s home, court records state.

The abuse came to light through the boy’s therapy with a psychologist, police said. The psychologist brought the boy’s relationship with Seals to police, police said.

The Seals twice served state prison terms, according to state Department of Correctional Services records. Seals served a sentence in state prison for burglary and attempted assault from February 1979 to April 1985, when he was paroled, DOCS records state.

Seals served his second state prison sentence for criminal possession of a weapon beginning May 1986 and was paroled in January 1990, DOCS records state.

The investigation is continuing and police are trying to determine if there are any other victims, Connellan said.




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