Man Accused of Molesting Children Beaten by Their Father, Police Say

Deputies found "a chaotic scene and an older male with severe injuries to his face"

police lights at night

Editor's Note (Feb. 25, 2021): Felony charges were dropped in this case in October 2020 and the suspect pleaded guilty to two counts of indecent exposure, NBC Washington reported.

Authorities in Virginia say a 61-year-old man accused of molesting two small children was attacked by the children's father when he discovered what was happening.

The father of the children was not charged in the beating.

The incident happened in the early morning hours of Dec. 29 at a home in Spotsylvania. The Spotsylvania County Sheriff's Office says Mark Stanley of Burlington, North Carolina, was in the area visiting family for the holidays.

That morning, one of the family members woke early and went to check on his two children, a 2-year-old and a 3-year-old. When he opened the door to the children's bedroom, he found Stanley in the room with the children undressed from the waist down, the sheriff's office said. When the father asked what he was doing in the room, Stanley allegedly pushed him out of the room and locked the door, authorities said.

The father then forced his way back into the room and began beating Stanley, authorities said.

Spotsylvania County sheriff's deputies were called to the home and found "a chaotic scene and an older male with severe injuries to his face," they said. The injured man was later identified as Stanley.

The other man was approaching Stanley with a handgun, deputies said. They told the man to drop the gun, and he complied.

Stanley was taken to a local hospital for his injuries and was later sent to Rappahannock Regional Jail with no bond.

The children were taken to the hospital to be evaluated for injuries.

Stanley is facing two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child and one count of domestic assault. Additional charges may be brought against him as the investigation continues, the sheriff's office said.

Correction (Feb. 25, 2021): This story has been updated to reflect accurate charges in the plea.

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