Domestic counselor pleads no contest to false kidnap story
BELLEFONTE — A woman who provided court-ordered domestic counseling services has pleaded no contest to charges that she falsely reported being abducted and sexually assaulted by a client.
Cindy Brumbaugh, 51, of Howard faked the report to cover up her affair with the man, Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller said.
“The defendant's actions initiated a full-on sexual assault investigation into a man she knew was completely innocent,” Parks Miller said. “She was willing to see her patient prosecuted for kidnapping and rape to simply hide that she had an extramarital affair with him so she could preserve her counseling license and her income.”
Defense attorney Stephanie Cooper declined to comment.
By pleading no contest, Brumbaugh chose not to contest the prosecution's case. She didn't acknowledge guilt, though the plea is treated as a conviction.
The chain of events began when the man was court-ordered to be counseled by Brumbaugh in March 2013. Parks Miller said the two then began a romantic relationship, which came to light when both were involved in a car crash during a tryst. Brumbaugh was charged in September, a few weeks after state police said her husband found out about the crash.
Brumbaugh claimed the man had forced her to accompany him, but investigators said text messages between the two showed otherwise.
Brumbaugh cried as the facts of the case were read for the judge on Thursday.
She entered the plea after saying only, “I just don't think everything was considered.”
Brumbaugh had previously pleaded no contest to the charges in March, then withdrew the plea before she could be sentenced in May. The plea on Thursday was entered only after a jury had been seated for her trial.
She faces up to five years in prison and $12,500 in fines when she is sentenced on Aug. 14.
Show commenting policy
TribLive commenting policy
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers.
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.
- Nonprofits in Pa. barely break even, survey finds
- Feds: Temple professor offered China data on U.S.-made device
- Families use children’s obituary notices to shine light on drug addiction
- Bee crisis deepens; Pa. keepers turn to making honey over pollination
- Teen dies in fall into Lawrence County creek