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Rep. Rick Roeber calls abuse claims a 'political hit' as ethics committee recommends expulsion

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Posted at 5:40 PM, Apr 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-19 18:40:32-04

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Missouri legislator said his childrens’ claims of sexual abuse were a “political hit,” according to state ethics committee report that found the claims credible and recommended expulsion from office.

The report, filed on Monday, recommended that the Missouri House of Representatives expel Rep. Rick Roeber and require him to pay more than $1,500 to cover the cost of the committee’s investigation.

Roeber, who recently submitted his resignation from the 34th District office, is under investigation for abuse claims stemming from the 1990s, after his children – the alleged victims – addressed the House of Representatives’ speaker elect earlier this year and made their claims public in local media outlets.

Roeber’s children, identified in the report as “Child 1,” “Child 2,” “Child 3” and “Child 4,” testified that he had abused them in their youth – claims that were first reported in September, before Roeber was elected.

Child 1 told the committee that Roeber had “groomed” the child from a young age, that Roeber was an alcoholic and that he had “drowned a litter of puppies in a nearby pond.” Child 1 also alleged to be the victim of physical abuse, stating that stealing Chapstick at 5 years old resulted in being hit with a belt.

Child 3 reiterated Child 1’s accounts of abuse with the use of a belt and said Roeber’s abuse did not end after he had stopped drinking. Child 4 told the committee that physical abuse – including use of a belt – occurred in a home that was “very chaotic.”

Child 2 did not testify.

Roeber also testified before the committee, denying any physical or sexual abuse. He did, however, state that he is an alcoholic but had not had a drink since March 5, 1992.

Despite investigations from the Division of Family Services, no charges were brought against Roeber at the time of the reports.

The House of Representatives had voted not to accept Roeber’s resignation, pending the outcome of the ethics commission report.