|From Acerbic Politics|
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Republican anti-gay activist Earl "Butch" Kimmerling was sentenced to 40 years in prison for molesting an 8-year old girl after he attempted to stop a gay couple from adopting her.
A man who gained notoriety for stopping a gay man from adopting a girl under his foster care was sentenced Wednesday to 40 years in prison for molesting her.
Earl Kimmerling, pleaded guilty in January to four counts of molesting his foster daughter, now 9. He and his wife, Saundra, fought in 1998 to keep the girl from being adopted by Craig Peterson, a homosexual who had adopted the girl's three brothers.
At sentencing, Kimmerling tearfully apologized and pleaded for leniency. But Judge Frederick Spencer called Kimmerling's crime a betrayal of trust and ordered him to serve 40 years.
"It's hypocrisy at its highest level. He holds himself out to be a person of God, as a representative of the Christian community, and at the same time engaging in outrageous behavior," said Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings.
During the adoption fight, the Kimmerlings gained support from political figures including Anderson Mayor Mark Lawler and Republican state Reps. Jack Lutz of Anderson and Woody Burton of Greenwood, whose proposal to ban gay adoptions failed in the Legislature.
The Kimmerlings eventually succeeded in adopting the girl, but in May 1998 Kimmerling was charged with 10 counts of sexual molestation after Saundra Kimmerling notified police.