Dakota County prosecutors charged a 70-year-old Burnsville man with five counts of criminal sexual conduct Friday after he told police he sexually abused a young victim 30 to 50 times over a five-year period.
Gerald Duane Packard faces three first-degree and two second-degree counts of criminal sexual conduct. Hennepin County Child Protection Services alerted Burnsville authorities earlier this month after the victim reported the abuse.
According to the complaint:
Packard fondled and had oral sex and intercourse with the child while baby-sitting. In an interview with police, he said he knew what he was doing was wrong, but that he could not stop. He denied abusing any other children and said he was unsure why he abused the victim. The victim also alleged that Packard took photos, which he denied.
Packard admitted taking photos of unknown girls, ages 10 to 15, at public beaches or swimming pools after he decided to stop abusing the victim. Packard told police he did so to “try to take the place of him touching the victim,” according to charges. Police later found numerous such photos in Packard’s home.
A judge set Packard’s bail Friday at $300,000 without conditions or $100,000 with conditions that include staying away from the victim or from public places where children would be present. If convicted, Packard could be sentenced to up to 30 years in prison or fined $40,000.
He is scheduled to appear in court June 22.