EASTON, Pa. | A former Hellertown woman, who admitted in 2018 to molesting a teenage boy, is off to state prison after a Northampton County judge found she violated the terms of her probation.
Following a lengthy hearing Wednesday, Judge Anthony Beltrami ruled that Bonnie Rohn violated probation, when she was unsuccessfully discharged from her outpatient sex offender treatment. Among the concerns shared by counselors and the judge was Rohn’s relationship with a former corrections officer at Northampton County Prison where she served her original sentence.
The now 37-year-old Rohn pleaded guilty in October 2018 to a single felony count of statutory sexual assault. Authorities said Rohn met the victim through her now ex-husband who worked as a high school wrestling coach.
The victim came from a difficult family situation, and Rohn took him in. Investigators say Rohn admitted to molesting the boy at her Hellertown home while her children were home.
In February 2019, Beltrami sentenced Rohn to 12 to 24 months less a day in Northampton County Prison and made her eligible for work release, a sentence that was criticized by the former county district attorney as too lenient. Before sentencing, she’d been free on unsecured bail.
Rohn was paroled in February and began outpatient treatment shortly after her release. The county probation department determined earlier this month that she violated probation and ordered her taken into custody after she was unsuccessfully discharged from her treatment program.
In response to questions from defense attorney Erv McLain, Rohn’s probation officer confirmed she complied with all Megan’s Law requirements and complied with a psychosexual evaluation. And she never contacted the victim, nor did she test positive for drugs or alcohol.
But Lindsay Fleischman and Allyson Wogenrich, counselors at Dynamic Counseling Associates, testified they didn’t believe Rohn was amenable to outpatient counseling, citing – in part – therapeutic polygraphs she reportedly failed. The polygraphs help counselors identify a patient’s specific issues and direct their treatment.
Fleischman and Wogenrich each testified that Rohn wasn’t open about her sexual history, specifically whether she had inappropriate sexual contact with a minor other than the victim.
McLain pressed Wogenrich, who worked directly with Rohn, about the polygraphs. She noted in a report that Rohn said she was uncomfortable openly discussing her criminal offense, testimony that elicited a surprised look from Rohn.
McLain appeared indignant at the suggestion that his client was uncomfortable talking about a crime for which she expressed remorse and to which she pleaded guilty in open court.
“She’s told you her sexual history, you just don’t believe her,” McLain said.
The counselors were also concerned about Rohn’s efforts to have contact with her children and her fiancée’s children. She is allowed to petition the court to have supervised contact with her children, and she wanted contact with her fiancée’s children for their upcoming wedding.
McLain clarified for the court that Rohn was not out “trolling playgrounds” but rather was asking for contact with her family and future family.
But Wogenrich testified that Rohn needs to be honest about her sexual history and “put in the work” before consistently pressing to have contact with the children.
In response to questions from the defense and prosecution, Wogenrich told the court that she cannot dictate who a client dates. But she expressed concern about Rohn being in a relationship with a former corrections officer, noting she doesn’t have all the details about how the relationship developed.
Rohn told the court that she and her now fiancée did not have a relationship while she was in jail and that the relationship began two weeks after her release. Assistant District Attorney Laura Majewski, who prosecuted the case, said Rohn had been evasive and inconsistent in her accounting of the relationship. She confirmed that he resigned from the prison following an investigation.
McLain said his client has never tried to deny what she did and remains open and receptive to counseling. Rohn told the judge that she’s done everything she’s been asked to do and asked for his mercy to understand that she is not the same woman who pleaded guilty.
But Beltrami called her relationship with her fiancée and the conclusions of the counselors “concerning.” He said he was not qualified to go against the recommendations of two experts that recommend in-patient treatment.
State prison was the default recommendation as there are no in-patient sexual offender programs in the state. Rohn has 10 days to appeal the judge’s ruling.