Union, Ohio, man sent to prison in child sex case

Published: Thursday, February 19, 2015 @ 4:11 PM
Updated: Thursday, September 10, 2015 @ 1:16 AM

UPDATE @ 12:54 a.m. (Sept. 10): Steven O’Berry, sentenced to 18 years in prison for rape, used his blue jailhouse jumpsuit to wipe his face as he offered a teary apology to his family and the mother of the child he assaulted.

He pleaded guilty in Montgomery County Common Pleas Court some months ago to charges of rape and gross sexual imposition.

“I take full responsibility for what I did,” he told the court, his family, the victim and her mother. “Some people have darkness in their lives…and I had a dark place in my life.”

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O’Berry later revealed to the courtroom that he was raped at age 7.

The victim’s mother also addressed the court, acknowledging that the case will affect her, her daughter and O’Berry — the man she said was once a role model and a great friend — for the rest of their lives.

“Right is right… and wrong is wrong,” she said. “This was wrong…we are beginning to accept this and are willing to work on forgiveness for Steve.”

UPDATE @ 6:01 p.m. (Feb. 26)

The allegations against Steven O’Berry, indicted on multiple counts of child sexual assault, are that the abuse began in 2011, West Carrollton Police Chief Doug Woodard said.

The allegations were reported to police on Jan. 27, when an officer was summoned to a hospital to meet with the child and the child’s mother, Woodard told News Center 7’s John Bedell.

All of the allegations police investigated occurred in West Carrollton, the chief said. His detectives are continuing their investigation, but there are no other victims police are aware of right now, Woodard said.

We’ve also learned O’Berry was a football coach in West Carrollton for the Wee Pirates at the time police said the incidents occurred.

According to Woodward, the criminal case does not involve anyone O’Berry coached.

“As far as our investigation is concerned, that aspect of the suspect’s life never entered into our investigation,” the chief said of O’Berry’s sports connection.

This past season, O’Berry passed a background check that allowed him to coach, which the Western Ohio Junior Football Conference requires of coaches every season.

O’Berry is not with the organization now, officials said, because the conference is between seasons.

UPDATE @3:32 p.m. (Feb. 25)

A Union man was indicted Wednesday on sex charges involving a female child under the age of 13.

Steven O’Berry, 38, was indicted by a Montgomery County grand jury on three counts of rape of a child under the age of 13.

O’Berry was also indicted on two counts of sexual battery, one count of gross sexual imposition of a child under the age of 13, and three counts of rape by force or threat of force. All of the charges are felonies.

FIRST REPORT (Feb. 19)

A Union man is in the Montgomery County jail facing several charges of rape and sexual battery.

According to court records, Steven O’Berry, 38, had inappropriate interaction with a girl he knew.

The Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office approved four counts of rape under the age of 13 and three counts of sexual battery on Feb. 9.

O’Berry remains in jail. Court records show he has a preliminary hearing Feb. 25.