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Former Norwell Youth Football coach sentenced to 45 years for sexual child exploitation

BOSTON – A former Norwell Youth Football coach was sentenced to 45 years in a federal prison for sexually abusing three boys and videotaping the abuse.

Derek Sheehan, 51, agreed to plead guilty to the three charges in July, but federal Judge Richard Stearns delayed accepting the plea until Tuesday's sentencing in Boston federal court.

Each count of sexual exploitation of children carried a minimum sentence of 15 years and a maximum sentence of 30 years. Sheehan faced a potential maximum sentence of 90 years.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Anna Paruti asked Stearns to give Sheehan 60 years in prison, while Sheehan's attorney, William Keefe, in court documents, asked for the mandatory minimum of 15 years.

Sheehan must serve 85%, or about 38 years, of his federal sentence before he will be eligible for parole. Sheehan has been in jail for the past three years, making him eligible for release at age 86.

Federal sentencing guidelines put his sentence at life in prison.

According to federal court documents, Sheehan abused at least four children, and videotaped 20 hours of him abusing them while they slept. The children were friends of his son, whom he also coached on a Norwell Youth Football team.

Norwell police began investigating after a victim's sister went to police to report what was happening to her brother. She saw what she believed to be exchanges between a school resource officer and Sheehan that exonerated him.

Investigators found Sheehan showed parents a fake police report that exonerated him. The fake report included text messages from his victims accusing him of being a rapist. The emails and other documents were fake, according to court documents.

Keefe said in court documents that Sheehan suffered two head injuries and was addicted to the attention deficit hyperactivity disorder drug Adderall, which he thinks caused changes in his behavior and "his ability to think properly."

Sheehan had "no memory" of raping any of the three victims, as charged in the federal case, despite taping the attacks, Keefe said in court documents.

Paruti, the prosecutor, lambasted Sheehan's claims that Adderall changed his behavior and that he did not remember attacking the three boys. She said it was not supported by medical or scientific research and "utterly impossible to accept" because Sheehan's abuse of the children was "systematic, methodical, protracted, multifaceted and conniving."

"Sheehan's violation of these children went beyond the sexual abuse he recorded on video," Paruti said in court documents. "He carefully manipulated these kids – and their parents – to make sure he had an astounding level of access to his child victims."

Sheehan secretly monitored their phone conversations, gave them marijuana and forged police reports to convince his victims' parents that he had been exonerated, she said in court documents.

Before Sheehan was charged federally for sexual exploitation of children, he was charged in multiple cases in Hingham District Court related to the abuse of children.

Sheehan was then indicted Dec. 21, 2018, by a Plymouth County grand jury on 19 charges related to the case, including five counts of child rape, 10 counts of indecent assault and battery on a child under age 14 and two counts each of intimidating a witness and impersonating a police officer.

He is set to be arraigned on those charges Friday, Dec. 10.

While the Plymouth County case appears to have been on hold for three years, a separate case in Barnstable Superior Court has been ongoing since 2018. Sheehan is accused of abusing a fourth boy who was vacationing with Sheehan's family in Yarmouth, according to court documents.

Sheehan is set to plead guilty in the Barnstable County case on Jan. 14, 2022.

An earlier plea hearing, set for Monday, was canceled after he was not taken to the courthouse by the U.S. Marshals Service, according to the court docket.

Derek Sheehan's wife, Nicole Sheehan, was indicted in March 2019 in Barnstable Superior Court on two counts of perjury for allegedly lying during a grand jury hearing.

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by Anonymousreply 11December 1, 2021 1:27 AM

He's a good looking guy who could have any LEGAL aged person to hook up with.

I'll never understand this kind of behavior.

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by Anonymousreply 1November 24, 2021 7:35 PM

It’s very simple, r1, they don’t want anyone legal, they want children. If it were that simple, there’d be no issues.

by Anonymousreply 2November 24, 2021 7:39 PM

Ouch.

by Anonymousreply 3November 24, 2021 7:40 PM

Adderall, huh?

Good thing he wasn’t taking Ambien.

by Anonymousreply 4November 24, 2021 7:40 PM

Sad!

by Anonymousreply 5November 30, 2021 7:49 PM

[quote]He's a good looking guy who could have any LEGAL aged person to hook up with.

Not me. He is AWG^INFINITY.

by Anonymousreply 6November 30, 2021 7:53 PM

R1 Even if he wasn’t a pedophile, he would still be ugly.

by Anonymousreply 7November 30, 2021 7:58 PM

He will be lucky to last 6 months in prison.

by Anonymousreply 8November 30, 2021 8:06 PM

Can someone remind me why we need to freak out about trans people in bathrooms?

by Anonymousreply 9November 30, 2021 9:53 PM

What a tragedy all around. He could have anyone? It's all in the mind. Very sad.

by Anonymousreply 10December 1, 2021 12:54 AM

I'll remind you R9. Postates unwelcome in the ladies' room.

by Anonymousreply 11December 1, 2021 1:27 AM
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