Many in the community are speaking out after a former restaurant owner in Ozark was given probation despite being convicted of rape twice in three years.
Beau Gormley used to own 3rd Street Pasta and Grill in Ozark.
In 2016, he was convicted of raping a 16-year-old girl in the kitchen of the restaurant.
He was sentenced to a mandatory 120-day sex offender program, followed by probation.
A little over a month after completing the program, Gormley was accused of raping the mother of his children.
The case went to trial and Gormley was found guilty.
On February 22nd, 2019, Judge Calvin Holden sentenced Gormley to five years probation.
His sex abuse program counselor testified Gormley was making progress in counseling.
The decision has since sparked outrage online, including a statement by Greene County Prosecutor Dan Patterson.
He posted a quote from Ronald Reagan on Twitter, later saying that he doesn’t feel there’s anything wrong in disagreeing with the outcome of a case.
“We must reject the idea that every time a law’s broken, society is guilty rather than the law breaker. It’s time to restore the American precept that each individual is accountable for his actions” Ronald Reagan. https://t.co/qBs8w03Mjo via @springfieldNL
— Dan Patterson (@jdanpatterson) February 23, 2019
The Victim Center in Springfield also said cases like these can be a cause for concern in the community.
The executive director of the Victim Center told KY3 News when victims don’t see accountability taking place, it’s discouraging and can create fear that some will never get justice.