Monroe man sentenced to 44-168 years for rape of 2 children
Valnn Dayne Spears, was sentenced to 44 to 168 years’ incarceration in a state correctional facility. This sentence was imposed by President Judge Margherita Patti-Worthington.
Spears was found guilty of all criminal charges after a three day jury trial ending on Dec. 7, 2018.
He was charged in two criminal cases, involving two separate minor victims. He was convicted of all 17 criminal charges, including two counts of rape of a child and two counts of involuntary sexual deviate intercourse with a child, as well as other sex related offenses.
Detective John Bohrman, of the Pocono Mountain Regional Police Department, filed the charges after one of the minor victims made a report about the abuse to police.
Bohrman conducted a thorough criminal investigation, which included taking the two victims to the Monroe County Children’s Advocacy Center, a facility specially designed to interview and examine minor children who were victims of abuse. Investigation revealed that Spears had sexually abused the two minors, over an extended period of time, between 2008 to 2015, in Tobyhanna.
Spears had relocated here from New York, where he was employed as a teacher. He also ran workshops for the Regenesis Institute, which involved breathing and new age mediation techniques. Before that he resided in California, where he had a prior conviction for possession of forged prescriptions.
Before sentencing, Spears was evaluated by the Pennsylvania Sexual Offenders Assessment Board, who found he met the criteria to be designated as a Sexually Violent Predator. The Board found that he engaged in predatory behavior and met the criteria for Pedophilic Disorder. However, the court did not hold a hearing to determine if Spears would be designated as an SVP, because the Pennsylvania Superior Court had ruled that statute was unconstitutional. That issue is currently on appeal with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court.
Spears was represented throughout the criminal case by Attorney Eric Closs of the Monroe County Public Defender’s Office. The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Michael Rakaczewski, of the Monroe County District Attorney’s Office, under E. David Christine Jr., the District Attorney.
Spears will be transferred from Monroe County Correctional Facility to a state correctional facility to begin serving his sentence He will also be required to register as sex-offender for the rest of his life.
If anyone has information or concerns about a minor being the possible victim of abuse or neglect, call ChildLine at 1-800-932-0313.