Local man sentenced 54 years for sex abuse
A Prineville resident was sentenced to 54 years in prison Thursday morning, following a weeklong jury trial for multiple sex abuse offenses.
Robert Vincent Clark, 38, was ordered to serve time in the Oregon Department of Corrections by Circuit Court Judge Annette Hillman during a sentencing at Crook County Circuit Court. According to District Attorney Wade Whiting, the sentence included no eligibility for any form of early release from custody, a provision for lifetime supervision and registration as a sex offender. The sentence is the result of a guilty verdict returned by the jury on 15 counts of sexual abuse involving three child victims.
In reaching their verdict, the jury found that Clark had sexually abused the three children over the course of six separate incidents from 2008 to 2013. The felony convictions include first-degree sodomy, second-degree sodomy, first-degree sexual abuse, second-degree sexual abuse and luring a minor. Clark also has additional charges of child sex abuse still pending in Wheeler County.
This case developed after an 11-year-old girl disclosed to a friend at school about the historical and ongoing sexual abuse by Clark, Whiting stated. The friend encouraged the girl to disclose the abuse to her mother, which she ultimately did. Upon learning of the abuse, the mother immediately reported it to law enforcement and the Department of Human Services. A thorough investigation ensued, and Clark was arrested shortly thereafter.
While Clark was in custody, two other child victims came forward and disclosed years of sexual abuse. During the course of those investigations, Whiting said the KIDS Center provided invaluable support with interviews and medical evaluations on the case. As is common in cases involving child sexual abuse, the disclosures were delayed by several years and no identifiable physical evidence was located during the physical examinations, Whiting explained. However, as a result of the thoroughness of the forensic interviews and the strength of the children's statements, the state was able to achieve a successful outcome in the case.
The State was represented by Assistant Attorney General Daniel Wendel and Assistant Attorney General Shannon Sullivan. Clark was represented by Jennifer Kimble.
The District Attorney's Office publicly thanked the Oregon Department of Justice, Crook County Sheriff's Office, Department of Human Services, and the KIDS Center for their support in this case.
"The dedication of our community partners in protecting the children of Crook County is commendable," Whiting said.