Former EMT facing charges of sexual misconduct

Chad Bowlby

After being sentenced to 12 years on Thursday, the former EMT who pleaded guilty to 10 felonies of sexual misconduct with a minor was put in handcuffs and legs irons by Cass County Sheriff deputies and removed from the courtroom.

Chad Bowlby, 47, of Russiaville, was dressed in a black suit and a black face mask and said little during his sentencing hearing on Thursday, mostly talking through his attorney to correct his presentencing report, at one point referring to a suicide attempt.

Bowlby made no statement or apology to the victim, who was 14 when he committed the acts, or to her family, who had packed the courtroom.

The acts that led to his arrest were committed in both Cass and Howard counties between August and December 2018, but the cases were consolidated into one sentencing in Cass, and the Howard charges will be dropped in exchange for his pleading to all the Cass charges and admitting he committed the Howard incidents.

The girl only appeared in the court through a letter her mother read from the witness stand.

She addressed Bowlby as “Dear perpetrator” in her letter, stating that he did not care what he stole from her, which was herself.

“Stole from me like a thief in the night,” her mother read from the letter.

The letter briefly mentioned bruised limbs and a bitten lip from apparently brutal behavior from Bowlby and asked if he’d been thinking of all the women who’d wronged him in life or if her degradation was something special.

Cass County Prosecutor Noah Schafer also added three letters from other members of the victim’s family, but when he asked her mother for a statement on the stand, the woman shook her head, tears in her eyes.

Bowlby pleaded guilty on Aug. 13 to the charges, eight charges of Level 4 felony sexual misconduct with a minor and two charges of Level 5 felony sexual misconduct with a minor.

The 12 years for the charges will be served concurrently, and after six years in prison, Bowlby could be on community corrections, such as home detention, if he qualifies for it.

Bowlby was a Prompt paramedic who the Indiana EMS Association named paramedic of the year in late 2018.

Early reports stated that the victim had interest in becoming an EMT, and Bowlby was a friend of the family.

The first incident began in his truck, but subsequent incidents happened at his Russiaville home, at her home and at his place of work in Logansport, according to the probable cause affidavit.

In her statements to the police, the girl said that she felt coerced from the first time and that incidents gained in frequency as time went on.

There’d also been a pregnancy scare in December 2018 where he bought her a pregnancy test

She also said that he told her he’d shoot himself before going to jail and that she shouldn’t tell anyone, so she held back on the truth.

Court documents noted his size, 5 feet, 10 inches tall and 240 pounds, would be intimidating to a young teen.

The girl told police she’d considered suicide, and police were given suicide letters the girl had written when they were first called to her home Jan. 10, 2019.

When police used a search warrant to go into Bowlby’s home, they found it was as described and drawn by the girl and containing items she specifically mentioned.

Reach James D. Wolf Jr. at james.wolf@pharostribune.com or 574-732-5117 Twitter

@JamesDWolfJr

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