LA PLATA, Md. (Feb. 20, 2018)—Tony Covington, State's Attorney for Charles County announced that on Tuesday, February 20, 2018, Charles County Circuit Court Judge Amy J. Bragunier sentenced Donald McCoy Stancell, Jr., age 39, to 25 years in prison for Sexual Abuse of a Minor.
On November 6, 2015, the victim, who was under 18 years of age, reported to school officials that she was being sexually assaulted by Donald Stancell. School officials then notified the Charles County Sheriff's Office.
An investigation revealed that Stancell began sexually abusing the victim when she was 14 years old. Over approximately a three year period, Stancell repeatedly sexually assaulted the victim and asked for sexual intercourse in exchange for gifts and privileges. The last sexual assault occurred two days before she reported it to school officials.
Investigators collected an article of the victims clothing and submitted it to the Maryland State Police Crime Lab for DNA analysis. That analysis revealed body fluids on the clothing and further analysis determined that the body fluids were consistent with that of Donald Stancell.
At sentencing, Assistant State's Attorney Sarah Freeman told the judge, "Donald Stancell was the person that was supposed to build [the victim] up, not tear her down. Due to his criminal acts, he's also damaged his family, their children, and his own biological children. The State feels the level of harm is excessive. This was calculated by Stancell; it was not isolated, but repeated. He was the primary actor. This is a heinous, violent act upon a teenager that the defendant had responsibility to care for. The State is asking for above guidelines."
Before sentencing Stancell, Judge Bragunier told him, "You used the church and your religion as a smoke screen to hide your double life. It is disgusting. You have seen the worst in society. You have also become the worst in society. The level of harm was excessive. You've exploited a position of trust. The Court is tasked to impose an appropriate sentence and I will do that." The 25 year sentence imposed by the Court is higher than the sentence recommended by the Maryland Sentencing Guidelines.
Prior to the sentencing hearing, Stancell entered a guilty plea to two counts of Possession of Child Pornography in a separate case. He was sentenced for these crimes as well. He received 5 years incarceration, all of it suspended with 5 years supervised probation upon his release. The Child Pornography sentence was imposed consecutively to the Sexual Abuse of a Minor sentence. He must register as a sexual offender for life.