U.S District Court sentenced GIDEON THOMAS BEWLEY, a 29-year-old member of Lummi Nation for sexually abusing a minor. The victim was 12 years old, and the abuser was 23 when the assaults started to occur, as mentioned by U.S. Attorney Brian T. Moran.
The U.S District Judge says that this case is gut-wrenching. “The abuser took advantage of the victim who was vulnerable and twice younger than his age.”
In 2014 and 2015, the abuser sexually harassed the victim at different Lummi Nation reservations when she was in 6th grade. Bewley threatened to kill the girl if she mentioned the abuse to anyone. However, in 2014, the victim revealed the abuse to her school counsellor but couldn’t discuss it with the police as she was afraid. The victim disclosed the sexual abuse in 2016 when Child Protective Services took charge, with the help of Lummi Police Department detective and arranged a forensic interview.
BEWLEY was arrested in 2018, was charged in January 2019 and found guilty in August 2019 by Lummi Police. He is needed to register as a sex offender following prison and will be on supervised release for five years.
The victim, however, is under the influence of depression and is working on her healing process, as mentioned by a spokesperson for the Lummi Nation’s victim services.
The case was prosecuted and investigated by the Lummi Police Department and the FBI.