Northeast Tarrant

Southlake man who seemed a ‘good father figure’ gets 82 years for child sex abuse

Former Southlake parks board member Miguel E. Salinas, 41, sexually abused a teen for more than four years before he was arrested in December. He was convicted on Tuesday.
Former Southlake parks board member Miguel E. Salinas, 41, sexually abused a teen for more than four years before he was arrested in December. He was convicted on Tuesday. Photo: Southlake police

A Southlake man who initially seemed like a good father figure but turned out to be a “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” according to the lead prosecutor, has been sentenced to 82 years in prison for continuous sexual abuse of a child and indecency with a child.

Miguel Esteban Salinas, 41, was convicted by a Tarrant County jury Wednesday, according to the Tarrant County district attorney’s office. He was arrested by Southlake police last December, court records show.

Prosecutors said Salinas moved into the home of his girlfriend, who was not named, and appeared to outsiders to have taken her children under his wing.

They said Salinas seemed to be a good father figure, acting as an encouraging guardian and coaching the children’s athletic teams.

Salinas was described by lead prosecutor Anna Hernadez as a person who “did so many things that made him seem like a good father figure, but he was the very definition of a wolf in sheep’s clothing.”

After he’d lived with the family for two years, the oldest child told a friend that Salinas had been sexually abusing her since joining the family. The girl is now in her early teens, the district attorney said.

According to a criminal complaint against Salinas obtained by the Star-Telegram in February, Salinas was accused of abusing the girl for more than four years beginning in July 2013.

He formerly served as a volunteer Southlake parks board member.

He was accused in the complaint of performing sex acts on the girl and forcing her to perform sex acts on him.

“The jury’s verdict and the swift action of the Judge in stacking the sentences guarantees the defendant will be 114 years old before he is eligible for parole,” Hernandez said in a news release. “This speaks to the heinousness of this crime.”

This report includes material from the Star-Telegram archive.

The women say an older church member touched them inappropriately when they were teens, and that church leaders kept it quiet. Now, years later, the man has been convicted on charges of child porn and online solicitation of a minor.

Susana, a survivor of sexual child abuse, said counseling helps her move past the emotional trauma she suffered as a child. (Video by Max Faulkner/Star-Telegram)

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