• Babysitter accused of sexually abusing 13 infants, toddlers


    WOBURN (FOX 25 / MyFoxBoston.com) – A Wakefield man faces dozens of child sex abuse charges in one of the "most disturbing cases of child abuse ever prosecuted" by the Middlesex County District Attorney's office.

    John Burbine, 49, has been indicted for more than 100 counts of charges related to sexual abuse of 13 children.

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    Middlesex County District Attorney Gerard Leone said the victim's ages ranged from eight days to 3.5 years. They were from numerous communities including Medford, Stoneham, Newton, Reading, Melrose, Woburn and Waltham.

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    Leone said the abuse occurred as Burbine worked as a babysitter for his wife's business, Waterfall Education Center. The business offered newborn care, babysitting and in-home tutoring.

    It was reported that the majority of the abuse happened at homes where the children lived and that some of the children were abused multiple times over several months or years.

    Officials said Burbine kept videos of the assaults.

    "This is among the most troubling and disturbing cases of child abuse ever prosecuted in Middlesex County," said Leone. "This defendant is accused of sexually assaulting more than a dozen children in his care, cruelly violating them and painfully betraying the trust of their parents."

    Burbine faces 40 counts of aggravated forcible rape of a child, subsequent offense; 17 counts of aggravated indecent assault and battery on a child; 12 counts of posing a child in a state of nudity; and 11 counts of posing a child in sexual conduct.

    Police said they received a complaint about Burbine in July. Court documents for Burbine's wife, Marian Burbine, stated that the complaint involved a two-year-old girl.

    He was arrested in September. Investigators said after the September arrest they uncovered more victims as well as the videos Burbine had taken.

    Marian Burbine was also charged with six counts of reckless endangerment of a child and two counts of operating an unlicensed day care business. She was ordered held on $1,000 cash bail.

    Prosecutors said Marian Burbine advertised her husband as a "problem-free" babysitter to a number of families. Leone says Marian was unaware of the most-recent alleged abuse.

    Burbine was listed as a level one sex offender after being charged with indecent assault and battery on a child in 1989.

    He was investigated by state social workers in 2005 and again in 2009.

    Court documents for Marian Burbine stated that the 2005 complaint came from a seven-year-old boy who said John Burbine inappropriately touched him while performing a lewd act on himself.

    The 2009 complaint came from a five-year-old child that said Burbine had touched them inappropriately on a number of occasions.

    Social workers said they found complaints of child abuse against Burbine to be credible but the cases were never prosecuted due to a lack of evidence.

    "When allegations of abuse by Mr. Burbine were alleged in 2005 and 2009, the Department made the appropriate referrals to the District Attorney's office for further investigation," a spokesperson for the Massachusetts Dept. of Children and Families told Fox 25. "For information on those investigations, please contact the District Attorney's office."

    Burbine will be arraigned on Dec. 12.

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