A bus mechanic who pleaded guilty this month in Parker County to two counts of sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl was sentenced to 26 years in prison Thursday.
Theron Scott McDaniel, 48, had hoped the judge would give him probation so he could continue supporting his wife and three daughters, a prosecutor said. Instead he got two consecutive 13-year sentences and must serve at least half before he is eligible for parole.
Authorities were alerted to the abuse in the summer of 2016 after the victim told a friend at a church camp what had been happening. The friend told a camp counselor, who called Weatherford police.
On Thursday, McDaniel apologized to the girl from the witness stand and told state District Judge Craig Towson that he had sex with the victim 13 times.
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The girl was an acquaintance of McDaniel’s.
The abuse occurred for more than a year and half before the mechanic was arrested, Parker County Assistant District Attorney Jeff Swain said in a Thursday email.
“The abuse in this case has had a profound impact on our victim,” Swain said.
Testimony in the punishment phase of McDaniel’s hearing showed the girl has suffered from post-traumatic stress disorder, nightmares, anxiety, depression and low self-esteem.
McDaniel testified while he deserved prison for what he did, he was asking for probation so he might continue to work and support his family.
Defense witnesses from McDaniel’s employer, Cowtown Charters, told the judge that the Weatherford man was an excellent employee. In addition, the children’s pastor and a volunteer from Open Door Church in Burleson said they believed McDaniel was not a risk to abuse anyone again.