OGDEN -- An 87-year-old man is facing charges of sexually abusing a minor, and now those claiming to be past victims are appearing in support of his latest accuser.
Orin Ervin Searle received his court date Tuesday afternoon at a preliminary hearing in 2nd District Court in Ogden. A review hearing has been set for September.
A May investigation by Ogden police and the Children's Justice Center left police with probable cause to charge Searle for what appeared to be repeated incidents of aggravated sexual abuse with the same victim.
A point of contention for interested parties was that Searle, because of his age and health, was not taken to jail and instead received a summons to appear at his court dates.
Present at the hearing was the group Bikers Against Child Abuse, who were there to support the victim.
"We were contacted by the victim's mother," said Ish, spokesman for the group's North Wasatch chapter.
Ish said Searle has a history, with multiple victims. The pretense of his being "too old" to be taken to jail is ridiculous, Ish said.
"Justice shouldn't have an age limit," he said. "It shouldn't matter how old or sick or crippled he is."
Lorinda Mayfield claims she is a past victim, saying she was abused by Searle when she was 8 years old in 1979.
Mayfield, now 42, came forward after she heard of Searle's arrest and reached out to other victims. She was also present at the hearing to support the current victim.
"I'm done being ashamed for something that he did," Mayfield said.
She was disheartened to hear that the review was scheduled so far off, concerned that Searle might die before potentially facing justice. Another fear Mayfield expressed is that he will be found incompetent to stand trial.
During the hearing, the judge allowed Searle to remain in his seat in the gallery because of his difficulty walking.
"That's part of your punishment, is to stand in front of a judge," Mayfield said. "That was spitting in the victims' faces."
Mayfield claims Searle's feebleness is all an act to avoid jail and that she has seen him walk perfectly fine with no effort.
She said one of the hardest parts for her is knowing that he is out and breathing free air until the review hearing in September.