Keith Scott Brown's daughters – victims of his abuse – wanted him to face "serious punishment"
Even the perpetrator’s own lawyer admits his acts were “reprehensible” and “deplorable.”
So what led Keith Scott Brown to make surprise guilty pleas in a Provo, Utah, courtroom Thursday, capping a deal for the horrors against own children?
His journey to justice began last year when Brown, a Mormon, approached his bishop at the Church of Latter Day Saints to confess his crimes, his attorneys say. These crimes included abusing his daughters Desirae, 32, Deondra, 30, and Melody, 26, all members of the popular Julliard-trained quintet of siblings.
Brown pleaded guilty to sodomy on a child under 14, and two charges of sex abuse of a child, all felonies.
Prosecutors dismiss the claim that Brown, 55, revealed his own transgression. They say the abuse actually came to light only after his daughters reported their father’s crimes to police when they discovered he planned to manage child musicians again.
Both sides agree on one thing, however: Brown is guilty.
Starting about six months ago, Brown’s defense team haggled with prosecutors over an appropriate punishment. Under today’s stricter laws, Brown could have faced 25 years for the sodomy charge alone; instead, he’ll likely serve 10 years to life under the statutes at the time the crimes were committed.
Deputy Utah County Attorney David Sturgill says Brown s daughters consented to the plea agreement, reports the Salt Lake Tribune. “They wanted their father to take responsibility more than anything else,” Sturgill said. “And they felt there should be a serious punishment.”
Brown’s attorney Steven Shapiro, who calls his client’s acts “reprehensible,” says Brown is ready to do his time for what he did.
“He’s terribly remorseful for what has happened and what he’s put his family through,” the lawyer tells the Deseret News. He also tells ABC News that “this was the next step in a long process in attempting to accept responsibility for deplorable contact with his daughters that happened many years ago.”
The plea removes the specter of a public trial and minimizes the harm to the family, he said.
The 5 Browns’ spokesperson said Thursday that there is, at least, one consolation for the family: It’s over.
“There is tremendous relief,” Kimball Thomson said, according to ABC News. “The girls handled the situation with such integrity and courage.”