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Editorial: Working to stop abuse

In this weekend’s paper, we reported three stories which may have been difficult for most to read, as they were crimes against children and teenagers.

Earlier this month, Amy Adkins, 30, a former Fairland High School Spanish teacher pleaded guilty in court to traveling across state lines to have sex with one of her students, who was 16 years old.

In addition, she pleaded guilty to selling a portion of her Adderall description. She faces up to eight years in prison when she is scheduled to be sentenced in September.

Also this month, Jeremiah Taylor, 32, a former South Point resident and Marshall University football player, pleaded guilty to distribution of child pornography.

Taylor admitted that in January 2019, he utilized the mobile messaging application Kik to send several graphic videos of child pornography to an undercover FBI agent.

He faces 5-20 years in prison when sentenced in September.

And, then, perhaps the most shocking news came yesterday, when Larry Porter, of Scioto County, was indicted, along with family and associates, for child sexual trafficking and trying to hide evidence of the crimes.

Police were following information that Porter was involved in sexually abusing minors with consent of the minors’ parents, in exchange for illegal drugs from Porter.

It is believed there are more victims in this case, with law enforcement seeking information from the public.

These situations are as difficult to write about as they are for you to read.

But the sad reality is these types of crimes take place and, unfortunately, there will be more cases in the future.

Though such conversations are unpleasant, it is important to teach children about abuse and boundaries with adults, and to tell them they can always go to someone they trust if a person harms them or makes them feel uncomfortable.

Which is why the public needs to be vigilant and watch for signs of danger.

If you suspect abuse of children is taking place, please contact law enforcement immediately.

The Department of Job and Family Services allows for anonymous reports to child welfare officers by calling 1-855-642-4453.

By acting as a voice for those who may not be able to speak, you can help to prevent further crimes against innocent victims.