Robert Bellar given $1 million bond in Athens County sexual abuse case

Local News

ATHENS, Ohio (WCMH) — A $1 million bond was issued Friday to the father of a family where several members are facing charges related to the sexual abuse of children.

Robert Bellar, 54, of Athens is charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity, a second-degree felony, and two counts of endangering children, both third-degree felonies. His wife, Deborah, 49, is facing the same charges and received a $1 million bond earlier this week.

Also Friday, one of the Bellars’ 18 children, Jonathan, 26, appeared on a charge of gross sexual imposition and received a $100,000 bond.

Another son, Josiah, 24, has been indicted on charges of rape and gross sexual imposition. He is currently jailed on unrelated charges and has yet to be arraigned.

Prosecutors called Robert Bellar a flight risk in asking for the high bond. They said after a warrant was issued for his arrest, he went to his brother’s home in Waverly and left his phone there.

Bellar’s attorney said he went to Waverly to find legal representation and pointed out that Bellar did surrender voluntarily on Wednesday, according to a news release from the Athens County Prosecutor’s Office.

Judge Patrick Lang said Bellar must have contact with this children who are minors or any co-defendants.

The case stems from a missing child who posted on Facebook under a pseudonym a series of sexual abuse allegations against members of the Bellar family. The incidents took place between 2008 and ’16.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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