B y Bill Toscano
A 73-year-old Granville man has been charged with five counts alleging he had sexual relations with a juvenile relative multiple times over a period of at least 18 months.
Edward Philip Myer was indicted May 3 by a Washington County grand jury and is being held on bond as he awaits a July 13 hearing.
Myer was charged with three felonies – sexual abuse in the first degree, criminal sexual act in the third degree and incest in the third degree. He was also charged on misdemeanor counts of sexual abuse in the third degree and endangering the welfare of a child.
Myer, who lives at 148 Honey Hill Lane and operates Myer’s Honey, gave a statement to police in which he admitted to sexual contact with the child, who is under 17.
The statement also identifies a second minor involved on at least one occasion as a “friend” of the victim, but the friend is not identified in the charges, which specify the relative as the victim, identified only by initials.
Police said that they monitored a “controlled telephone call” between Myer and another relative in which he admitted to “ongoing sexual activity” with the victim, and said the incidents were because he was lonely after his wife left him, about 10 years ago.
Myer, who lost part of one leg to a staph infection about six years ago, has limited mobility and said the victim came to his house, where court documents said the incidents occurred.
In detailing the fifth count, the misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of a minor, the grand jury summed it up by saying that from summer 2010 to December 2011, Myer “… did knowingly act in a manner likely to be injurious to the physical, mental or moral welfare of … a children less than 17 years old.”
The indictment details mutual massaging and fondling and “having the child disrobe before him.”
On the felony count of incest, the grand jury said Myer engaged in oral sexual conduct with “a person whom he knows to be related to him, whether through marriage or not, as a descendant.”
On the felony charge of criminal sexual act in the third degree, Myer is accused of having oral sexual contact with a person under 17.
The felony charge of first-degree sexual abuse contends Myer subjected the victim to sexual contact “by forcible compulsion.” The indictment does not specify the nature of the forcible compulsion and District Attorney Kevin Kortright said that charge came from evidence besides Myer’s confession.
The second misdemeanor, sexual assault in the third degree, came about because the grand jury said Myer subjected the child to sexual contact without consent “in that [the child] was unable to consent because of [the child’s] age.”
The indictments were handled by Katherine G. Henley, the county’s first assistant district attorney, and the investigation was headed by New York State Police Investigator Joseph Bearor.
Myer is being held on $25,000 cash or $50,000 secured bail.