Authorities say there may be more victims in Mecosta County sex case
Two Fork Township officials are currently being held in the Mecosta County Jail on $5 million bond after being arrested for multiple sex crime charges involving two teenage sisters.
Township Supervisor Jack Bark Sr., 70, of Barryton, and Cathleen Martin, 47, of Barryton, both face possible life sentences.
The investigation started after two sisters, ages 16 and 17 reported that they had been sexually assaulted on multiple occasions since 2009. Authorities say that one of the victims told a teacher during her Chippewa Hills High School Band Camp this week, that she had been sexually assaulted.
"What we're investigating now is the events that occurred from 2009, which made one of the females under the age of 13, all the way to as recent as last month," said Mecosta County Sheriff's Department,Det. Sgt. Casey Nemeth.
Bark was arrested for 8 counts of felony criminal sexual conduct in the first degree and 2 counts of criminal sexual conduct second degree, which refers to a child under 13. Bark remains in custody at the Mecosta County Jail on a $5 million bond.
Martin was arrested on 8 counts of felony criminal sexual conduct first degree, child abuse first degree and child abuse second degree. She also remains at the Mecosta County Jail on a $5 million bond.
Authorities say they are still conducting interviews under the suspicion that there could be more than just the two victims.
"We have these two victims as of now," said Det. Sgt. Nemeth. "It's our duty as the sheriff's office to attempt to make contact with and juvenile females or males that have been in contact with these two, to basically rule out any other victims that are involved and give a chance for anybody else that has information to contact us, reference inappropriate contact or behavior."
7&4 News was told on Saturday a third victim claimed that Bark is responsible for criminal sexual conduct in the second degree. The allegations have been turned over to the Mecosta County Prosecutors office.