A jury found a Houston woman guilty of second-degree statutory rape Thursday after deliberating for less than 30 minutes.
The group of seven men and five women from Texas County also sentenced Sherri Long-Bucchi, 48, to three years in the Missouri Department of Corrections system. That deliberation was under one hour, according to Texas County Prosecutor Parke Stevens Jr.
The trial included testimony from the male victim, who was 16 at the time of the July 2016 incident.
“This woman has forever affected the life of a boy based on her actions,” Stevens said. “Because of her actions, she will have to register as a sexual offender in addition to the punishment she receives.”
According to Stevens, Long-Bucchi invited several teenagers to a social event at her home and had sexual intercourse with the victim. The boy was friends with Long-Bucchi’s two children and had been provided alcohol at the event. The sexual contact between the two was reported to authorities in December 2016.
After a Texas County Sheriff’s Department investigation – which included admissions by Long-Bucchi – a grand jury indicted her. She was arrested and held on $200,000 bond.
Stevens filed the charges and tried the case for the state.
“This child’s life has forever been changed by this woman’s actions and as he testified in front of the defendant today, his story never waffled, never changed, even after being cross examined by defense counsel’s difficult questioning,” Stevens said during closing arguments.
Judge William Hickle, presiding judge of the 25th Circuit, oversaw over the trial. Upon Long-Bucchi’s request ordered a sentencing assessment report and set final sentencing for 9 a.m. Feb. 6 in Texas County.
She is held in the Texas County Jail.
“This child’s life has forever been changed by this woman’s actions and as he testified in front of the defendant today, his story never waffled, never changed, even after being cross examined by defense counsel’s difficult questioning.”
-PARKE STEVENS JR.