FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, February 1, 2024
Park Slope Man Sentenced to Seven Years in Prison
For Repeatedly Sexually Assaulting Young Girl
Child was Abused by Defendant During Piano Lessons and Other Occasions
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a Brooklyn man who sexually abused a child repeatedly for almost two years has been sentenced to seven years in prison.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “This defendant exploited his position of trust to prey on a young child, which is an unconscionable betrayal. After starting a friendship with this family, he sexually abused the child beginning when she was just 9 years old. I hope today’s sentence brings some closure to the victim and her family and I remain steadfast in my commitment to protecting our children.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as John Stewart Russell, 62, of Park Slope, Brooklyn. He was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice John Hecht to seven years in prison and 10 years’ post-release supervision. The defendant was convicted on January 11, 2024 of second-degree course of sexual conduct against a child and endangering the welfare of a child, following a bench trial. He must register as a sex offender upon his release from prison.
The District Attorney said that, according to the evidence, the defendant started a friendship with the victim’s family in the summer of 2016. During that period, he began a pattern of grooming that preceded the sexual abuse to which he subjected the child. In November 2016, the defendant began giving the child piano lessons and started abusing her when he was alone with her.
Furthermore, according to the evidence, from November 2016 to June 2018, when she was 9 to 11 years old, the defendant regularly subjected the victim to sexual contact including groping her and subjecting her to various sexual acts. The sexual abuse continued after the piano lessons ended.
The defendant was arrested on July 30, 2020, after the victim disclosed the abuse to her parents.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Daniel Newcombe, Senior Assistant District Attorney Gabriela Sinisi, and Paralegal Supervisor Jennifer Hernandez, of the District Attorney’s Special Victims Bureau, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Miss Gregory, Bureau Chief.