The New York Times, April 12, 2000

Two Texas Cops Accused of Torture, The Associated Press

DESOTO, Texas (AP) -- Two police officers -- a former officer of the year and her husband -- were charged with beating and sexually assaulting their 13-year-old nephew who was in their care.

The boy and his 16-year-old sister, who says she also was physically abused, had been placed with Lt. William Homer Ransom and Sgt. Judith Corkran Ransom after years of abuse by their parents, according to court documents.

The couple, who have each worked for the DeSoto Police Department for about 20 years, were indicted last week by an Ellis County grand jury and arrested on Tuesday. They remained in the county jail on Wednesday, with bond set at $100,000 each.

The Ransoms' attorney, George Milner III, said the couple never abused the boy.

``There is no truth to the allegations,'' Milner said.

Milner said the Ransoms would use corporal punishment on the child when he would misbehave.

``In this case there is nothing excessive or unusual,'' he said. ``I think there is a misunderstanding of certain physical evidence, and I think it is being driven by the hands of deception by a 16-year-old girl.''

DeSoto Police Chief Mike Brodnax said he believes the Ransoms' actions have been misunderstood and that the children may be lying to authorities.

The boy has learning and physical disabilities, he said.

William Ransom, 53, was indicted on one count of aggravated sexual assault of a child and nine counts of injury to a child. Judith Ransom, 54, was charged with one count of aggravated sexual assault of a child and three counts of injury to a child.

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