Former southwest Missouri minister deemed sexually violent predator by jury

Jurors rule that a former southwest Missouri minister is a sexually violent predator. The jury decided that Donald Peckham, 86, of Sarcoxie, should remain confined even though he has finished a 15-year prison sentence for sodomizing teenage boys.

According to the Associated Press, jurors reached the verdict last month in the case against Peckham, but the case records weren’t publicized until Tuesday.

Prosecutors say Peckham sexually abused at least 14 boys between 12 and 16 years old over the course of 30 years and continued to victimize young boys until he was 67-years-old.

Defense attorney Amy Clay says the decision to indefinitely commit Peckham to a treatment program run by the Missouri Department of Mental Health amounts to a “life sentence” because few people get through it.


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