SOMERSET (AP) – A former church deacon and school board member was sentenced to five years of probation for inappropriate foot fetish contact with 12 boys, one of whom called the man “demon possessed.”
Brian Eppley, 57, of Davidsville, had previously pleaded guilty to corruption of minors and unlawful contact with minors. He apologized to the boys and asked their families for forgiveness.
Eppley was a Conemaugh Township school board member and deacon at the Maple Spring Church of the Brethren in Jerome when he had the boys – all about 12 years old– put their bare feet in his face or in his lap at various times from 2009 to 2012. Eppley also traced outlines of the boy’s feet.
“Whatever demon possessed you did a good job,” one boy told Eppley at his sentencing Thursday.
Somerset County Judge John Cascio opted not to make a statement on behalf of the victims, some of whose parents also addressed the court, saying, “These families make much better spokespersons than I do.”
District Attorney Lisa Lazzari-Strasiser commended the boys, saying she had “never witnessed such grace and dignity in preparing a statement given their age and the facts surrounding the situation.”