THE ISSUE: Pedophiles within education

OUR OPINION: These two deserved what they were handed

Justice has been served.

Two former educators will never again be able to prey on young people. It’s almost assured they will spend the remainder of their lives behind bars.

Kimberly Crain and Gary Doby, who had orchestrated sexual exploitation of children under 12, and lewd molestation, each have been sentenced to life in prison.

Crain, 50, who was sentenced this past Friday to 45 years in prison after admitting 31 felony counts, will not be eligible for parole until she is 87 years old.

Doby, 66, in January, was sentenced to 18 life sentences in the exploitation counts, 10 years on the conspiracy charge and 20 years on the lewd molestation count. The sentences run concurrently.

District Judge John Canavan was not swayed by a 27-page letter Crain recently wrote to him pleading for leniency and probation. She originally had entered a blind plea more than two months ago, but changed that and admitted all 31 counts last Friday.

Crain will be eligible for a judicial review of her sentence in one year and could ask Judge Canavan to consider lowering her sentence.

Crain’s attorney said they’re hopeful the judge will modify her sentence at that time.

We hope the judge doesn’t, that he remains steadfast behind the prison term he handed Crain on Friday. She deserves what she received.

The crimes Crain and Doby perpetrated on these young girls, who were students of Crain, were heinous.

They were particularly disturbing and disgusting that as a third grade elementary teacher Crain, who was trusted with the care of these young students, and was supposed to be educating them, instead preyed on them for her own gratification and also involved Doby, a retired university professor, in much of the activity, though not all of it.

Crain, remember, admitted 11 felony counts of possessing juvenile pornography.

As part of the case against her, prosecutors alleged Crain, while working as a third grade teacher at McLoud Elementary School, took photos of as many as 14 young girls while they were changing clothes, some in her classroom and others while at her home.

The fact that Crain was preying on her students in both her home and in her classroom is despicable.

District Attorney Richard Smothermon said this case shook up an entire town, with many children now in counseling and some transferring to other schools because of these events.

“The actions that these two individuals took are going to have ripple effects for the remainder of these children’s lives. I hope when they sit and swing their feet on their cot in prison that they understand that they have destroyed the trust of 12 to 15 children — and that’s not counting the ones we could not identify,” Smothermon said.

We agree with Mr. Smothermon’s statements.

Crain and Doby each knew what she and he was doing. Now, they should remain behind bars as the judge has decided.