Lehigh Valley

Judge won't dismiss sex assault charges against former Children's Home employee

He's accused of having sex with three teenagers

EASTON, Pa. - A Northampton County judge has refused to dismiss sex assault charges against a former Children’s Home of Easton staff member who’s accused of having sex with three teenagers while working at the Wilson Borough facility.

An attorney for Troy L. Bussey argued at his September preliminary hearing that charges against the 34-year-old should be dismissed because the victims didn’t attend the hearing to identify him. The defense argued against the prosecution’s use of hearsay testimony provided by investigators.

The district judge allowed the testimony, and attorney Matthew Potts filed motions in county court this month asking that the charges be dismissed.

In her ruling this week, Judge Kimberly McFadden noted that hearsay evidence is sufficient for the prosecution to make its prima facie case. A detective with the Wilson Borough Police Department received reports from Bussey’s employer, and the victims that he allegedly had sex with were Children’s Home residents, according to court papers.

A staff member and the victims, who all had “extended periods of contact” with Bussey, all identified him to investigators as the suspect. And the detective investigating the case identified Bussey at the preliminary hearing as the suspect, according to the ruling.

The judge found that the prosecution sufficiently identified Bussey as the “likely perpetrator.”

Bussey is scheduled for a status conference before McFadden on Friday.

Authorities allege Bussey between 2013 and 2015 had sexual relationships with three girls – ages 17, 17 and 16 – who lived at Children’s Home.

One victim reported having a relationship with Bussey after her arrival in 2013. They allegedly had sex at least 10 times on Children’s Home property over a two-year period, according to court records.

A second victim reported she and Bussey would “play fight,” which eventually lead to him grabbing her and sexually assaulting her, according to records.

Authorities said the third victim reported she too would “play fight” with Bussey, which eventually led to sex. The girl told investigators he allegedly ended a relationship with one girl to begin a relationship with her.

Authorities in 2016 filed 13 total charges against Bussey, including felony counts of institutional sexual assault, child endangerment, statutory sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and corruption of minors.

He’s being held in Northampton County Prison after failing to post a combined $350,000 bail.

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