A man charged with sexually abusing 13 children through his wife’s unlicensed child care business died at a hospital Friday night after an apparent suicide attempt in jail several hours earlier, his lawyer said.
Defense attorney William Barabino said John Burbine, a convicted sex offender, apparently tried to hang himself in his cell in an approximately 20-minute period between his guards’ regular checks on him.
"We don’t know why," Barabino said. "John was a smart man and apparently took an opportune time to do what he did."
He said Burbine was receiving half-hourly checks by guards, one of whom noticed him hanging in his cell about 10 minutes before the usual 8 a.m. check.
Burbine, 50, had no pulse, but he was revived through CPR, and efforts to maintain his pulse and breathing and to stabilize him continued for hours at the hospital, the attorney said. Burbine died at 6:26 p.m. without regaining consciousness, he said.
The Middlesex sheriff’s office said Burbine was found by guards making morning rounds and was "in need of emergency medical attention." The office’s statement said jail medical personnel gave him emergency treatment and notified the Cambridge Fire Department and EMS, which took him to the hospital.
The death will be investigated by jail officials and state police assigned to the Middlesex district attorney’s office.
Prosecutors alleged that between August 2010 and August 2012 Burbine molested children ranging from 8 days to 3 1/2 years old through his wife’s business in Wakefield, a Boston suburb. Prosecutors said most were assaulted in their homes when Burbine was substituting for his wife as their caregiver.
Burbine, who was accused of recording the assaults, had pleaded not guilty in December 2012 and was being held on $1 million bail. He offered last year to undergo castration in exchange for a lenient sentence, but prosecutors rejected that.
Prosecutors don’t believe his wife knew about the assaults but said she knew he was a convicted sex offender.
Burbine was convicted of indecent assault and battery on a child in 1989 and designated a Level I sex offender, the category considered least likely to reoffend. ..Source.. by SYLVIA LEE WINGFIELD
Marian Burbine, wife of late accused child rapist, pleads guilty to child endangerment
Marian Burbine, whose late husband, John Burbine, was accused of raping young children through his wife’s unlicensed day care, pleaded guilty on June 13 to child endangerment, according to the Middlesex District Attorney’s office.
Marian Burbine, of Wakefield, who operated Waterfall Education Center, is charged with placing six young children at substantial risk of sexual abuse when she left them in the sole care of her husband.
She pleaded guilty in Middlesex Superior Court to six counts of reckless endangerment of a child and two counts of operating an unlicensed day care business. The sentencing will take place on June 23.
"The defendant has now admitted her responsibility for this horrendous case of child endangerment," said Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan. "Parents of these young children entrusted their children’s well-being to the Burbines, who portrayed themselves as caring and experienced child care providers.
"Instead of ensuring the children’s welfare and safety, however, the defendant knowingly put them at risk for sexual abuse by her husband," she added. "This is a parent’s worst fear and we hope the resolution of this case will permit the families of these young children to begin the healing process."
According to authorities, from August 2010 through August 2012, Marian Burbine operated a business called Waterfall Education Center, which advertised a number of child care services, including short and long-term child care, group child care, overnight newborn care, and summer camp alternative care. Waterfall Education Center was not licensed by the Department of Early Education and Care therefore the Burbines were not permitted to care for children outside of the children’s own home.
Through the investigation, it was discovered that parents entrusted their young children to John Burbine upon the recommendation of Marian Burbine, who knew her husband was a registered sex offender who had three convictions for indecently assaulting children in 1989 and supported cases with the Department of Children and Families for sexually assaulting boys in his care in 2005 and 2009. Marian Burbine assured parents that John Burbine was an experienced and problem-free babysitter.
John Burbine was alleged to have raped and sexually assaulted boys and girls in his care, including 13 infants and young children. The investigation revealed evidence that John Burbine possessed images and videos, which he allegedly recorded of these children, stored on his home computer, posed in various states of nudity and engaged in sexual acts.
His victims were infants and toddlers during the time of the abuse, and were from Stoneham, Medford, Newton, Reading, Melrose, Woburn and Waltham.
It is believed that the alleged rapes and abuse occurred outside the presence of the defendant and without her direct knowledge.
John Burbine died on March 7 while in custody awaiting trial on various charges, including aggravated forcible rape of child. ..Source..