WISE COUNTY (CBSDFW.COM) - Some North Texas parents apparently trusted an elderly man so much that they allowed their children to play at his house and sometimes even spend the night. Now a 70-year-old Wise County man is accused of molesting at least one little girl.
Officers arrested Hollis “Butch” Belcher on Friday at his home in Rhome. That is the same place where he’s accused of molesting a 10-year-old girl back in February.
“Some juvenile girls had been going down to Mr. Belcher’s residence and visiting with him,” Wise County Sheriff David Walker explained. “One of the girl’s came home with what was believed to be and later turned out to be confirmed as hickeys on her neck. That’s kinda how the investigation started.”
The girl is believed to have been molested on February 26 and 27, at Belcher’s house just south of Fairview Airport. Investigators say there were two other girls, ages 5 and 11, at the house when the incidents allegedly happened.
Sheriff Walker said there were even a number of children at Belcher’s house when authorities went there to arrest him. “They actually had to bang on the door numerous times to get him to answer the door because he had several children, that were ages 10 to 12, in the house playing.”
While investigators deal with the suspected 10-year-old victim, they’re worried more children may have been molested. “We suspect that this case is going to grow, not only with this victim that we’ve been working with, but also with other victims that we’ve been able to identify… or possible victims I guess should say.”
Belcher has apparently been a Wise County resident for years and may have used his standing in the community to his advantage. “He’s been there for quite some time apparently and has gained the trust of the children and the parents,” the sheriff said. “So basically, one of the investigators this morning used the term ‘groomed,’ groomed his victims.”
Belcher was released on a $70,000 bond, after being charged with multiple counts of Indecency with a Child by Sexual Contact.
Officials with the Sheriff’s Office are offering advice to parents in Wise County and in neighborhoods near Fairview Airport. “If their kids have been around him, unsupervised, we’d like for them to contact us. We can visit with them and kind of discuss with the parents what his motive was.”
Any concerned parent can contact Wise County Sheriff’s at (940) 627-5971.
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