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Boy, 5, assaulted at Va. playground

A 5-year-old boy was sexually assaulted on the playground of Featherstone Elementary School in Woodbridge after school hours last week, and a school employee who witnessed the incident alerted police and videotaped the assault, Prince William police said.

A janitorial worker saw the man assaulting the child shortly before 6 p.m. on June 8, Prince William Police spokesman Jonathan L. Perok said.

He said the employee immediately called police, then began to record what he saw. Perok said the worker taped the incident in an effort to help police.

Police arrested Frank Devon Harris, 19 of the 13000 block of 6th St. in Bowie. He was charged with indecent liberties and attempted forcible sodomy.

The victim was well-known to Harris, police said.

-- Maria Glod

By Maria Glod  |  June 15, 2010; 10:03 AM ET
Categories:  Maria Glod , Pr. William , Schools , Sex Crimes  
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Disgusting...enjoy all of the indecent liberties and forcible sodomy you're going to get in prison, you animal.

Posted by: thebossman | June 15, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

I really think law enforcement needs to consider castration for people who sexually assault others...ESPECIALLY those who prey on innocent children. If you don't know what to do with "it", you don't need to have one. Period. I bet that would give them something to think twice about before committing their preverted acts!

Posted by: ms_mbacpa | June 15, 2010 10:19 AM | Report abuse

To those people who want to judge the janitor for taping instead of stopping it immediately: I bet that the janitor / community had tried to get this guy locked up before but didn't have evidence.

Tough call but I'm not going to judge the janitor harshly without having more information.

Posted by: CrabHands | June 15, 2010 10:23 AM | Report abuse

"and a school employee who witnessed the incident alerted police and videotaped the assault"

ARE YOU KIDDING ME???? Why didn't this worker go run out to the yard and help the boy being assaulted?

I would give my life to save a child from such evil.

Posted by: AlbyVA | June 15, 2010 10:27 AM | Report abuse

I'm glad the janitor taped this perp and handed the evidence over to the police. Have fun in prison, Mr. Harris.

Posted by: blackforestcherry | June 15, 2010 10:30 AM | Report abuse

You don't need a Video tape.. You have the victim and a witness with their own 2 eyeballs.

This janitor should have run to help save that 5 year old baby...

Woohooo, extra evidence for the police, but no helping hand for the victim? What type of people live in this world today? We let technology fix our problems? The janitor should have clock'd this guy in the head with the video camera and save that 5 yr old from this assault.

Posted by: AlbyVA | June 15, 2010 10:36 AM | Report abuse

Come on people give the janitor a break. You know how screwed up this justice system is. How many times have perts like this walked with a witness? I am glad this janitor filmed this which can be used as evidence against this creep.

Question wondering if this person is either some kin to the child or at least a friend to the family? They said Harris was well known to the child. Wondering if this creep was asked or asked to pick this child up from school and had been doing this to this child in the evening for a while?

Lawd Have Mercy Our Children Are Not Safe No Matter How Hard We Try To Protect Them.

Posted by: msruby36 | June 15, 2010 11:05 AM | Report abuse

Notice no use of the word "violent" in conjunction with the assault. The janitor probably would of intercepted the assault imediately if the child was being violently assaulted.
As it's listed as being a sexual assault, that could mean anything from groping, tickling, inappropriate touching or worse etc, where a videotape of the offense would be extremely useful. The child in question might not even realise a crime was taking place, nor is a 5 year old the best witness on the stand. The janitor also might not of been sure what he was seeing, nor would he be an expert on the criminality of specific acts.
I believe videotaping an event like this could of been the best possible action that he could of taken.
Now everyone knows exactly what took place, and the child will most likely be spared from having to testify or endure lengthy interviews over what happen.

So thank you janitor, for doing what was right and the smart thing to do.

Posted by: MarilynManson | June 15, 2010 11:08 AM | Report abuse

The article doesn't say how long the witness stood there recording the act. The janitor could have taped ten seconds of it as evidence, then stopped the attack. Or not. It seems there are elements to this story that haven't come to light yet.

Posted by: mercredi | June 15, 2010 11:14 AM | Report abuse

AlbyVA -

Eyewitness testimony is not the gold standard of evidence that you seem to think it is. People who are not artists are not good at giving an unambiguous physical description of another person (a case in point is the Alexandria indecent exposure case in which the suspect is described as "white or hispanic, between 5'6" and 6'2"..." Memories change or fade over time and testimony can be biased by various factors. Fifteen different people witnessing the same event can give fifteen different descriptions of it.

Posted by: FrankIBC | June 15, 2010 12:15 PM | Report abuse

Come on. The Janitor did the right thing. I can assure you that this was not the first time this little boy was assaulted by this man. This guy was probably a relative or friend and had been doing this on a regular basis. What parent let's there 5 year old go to the playground alone. This young man probably volunteered to take this young boy to playground. This may have been a daily occurence. Kudos to the Janitor as the tape proves it happened without a doubt. The pervert can't rely on the control he may have over this young boy and slide out of this one.

Posted by: nichellieagee | June 15, 2010 12:42 PM | Report abuse

the perp is 19 and we don't know height, weight and build. We have nothing describing the janitor, who could be old, small, handicapped, etc. The janitor got the evidence and child molestors do not slide by in prison. Well, if the perp get's a sentence that is long enough and not suspended.

Posted by: cadlecreek1 | June 15, 2010 1:15 PM | Report abuse

Often-times, just being an "eyewitness" isn't enough, especially with these juries. Trust me, I know.. It was for the best that the crime was taped, that way there IS proof beyond a reasonable doubt, and this ahole will go to prison, where hopefully, the same thing will be inflicted on him.

Posted by: rwynn01 | June 15, 2010 3:57 PM | Report abuse

Hopefully, Mr. Frank Devon Harris will get a long sentence and a long encounter with a well-endowed bodybuilding jailbird bandit.

Posted by: ceefer66 | June 15, 2010 4:50 PM | Report abuse


Yours is an emotional response that could, the way our system works, allow that child molester to either go free or cause him to be charged with lesser offenses. Either of those outcomes would have him out on the street sooner to attack more 5-year-old boys. The janitor did exactly the right thing, and most of the other commenters were intelligent enough to recognize that.

I echo Marilyn Manson's kudos to the janitor. Thank you. You deserve more than mere thank-you's. I hope the county government and school system present you with a more substantial expression of the community's gratitude.

May the molester be done in by his prison-mates.

Posted by: SecularHumanist1 | June 18, 2010 5:28 PM | Report abuse

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