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Missing Teen Escapes Alleged Sex Abuse From ‘Cult’-Like Family, Parents Of 19 Kids Charged

Missing Teen Escapes Alleged Sex Abuse From ‘Cult’-Like Family, Parents Of 19 Kids Charged

Serah Bellar of Amesville was reported missing on April 16, 2020, at the age of 16.

Athens County teen Serah Bellar was reported missing in April 2020 at the age of 16. Now the teen has apparently resurfaced online through a Facebook post she made right after turning 18. The teen said she was safe but was waiting to turn 18 so she could come forward publicly. According to WOUB, under the name Delilah Rose Price, she posted that there was a long history of sexual abuse and other mistreatment from within her family. Facebook reportedly took the post down, but The Athens County Prosecutor’s and Sheriff’s Offices ensured that the case was being investigated. The press release said authorities were investigating “other allegations made in the post.”



 

 

Bellar was last seen in Millfield, OH on April 3, 2020, according to the Ohio Attorney General’s office. Multiple reports of sexual abuse within the Bellar home were made over the years but no formal action was taken. Athens County Children Services received reports in February 2017, May 2018, and April 2020 that sexual abuse was taking place in the household. Reports and records provided by Athens County Children Services and the Athens County Child Advocacy Center were given but nothing was done about it formally. “There was an absolute systematic failure in handling these accusations,” Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn said in a prepared statement. “Serah was turned away by authorities every time she tried to report this abuse. Fearing for her continued safety, she left the state and was victimized again by those who she thought were helping her.”



 

 

Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn launched the investigation, with the cooperation of other law enforcement agencies, to look into the history behind Bellar’s disappearance. Four family members have been charged as a result. Robert Bellar, 54, and Deborah Bellar, 49, the parents of Serah and 17 other children, have been charged with engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity and two charges of endangering children. Robert and Deborah are believed to have 18 biological children and one adopted child. The endangering children charge lists Serah and another child as victims, reports WSYX. One of Bellar’s brothers, Josiah, 24, was indicted on three counts of rape and two counts of gross sexual imposition. Another brother, Jonathan, 26, was also accused of gross sexual imposition. With the help of Sheriff Alvie Lee Kight Jr. and the Toombs County Sheriff’s Office, as well as the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, two other suspects, Jerry and Shayna Chadwick were taken into custody and charged with interfering with custody.



 

 

According to Daily Mail, Serah Bellar reportedly told The Athens Messenger she was forced to attend a 'cult' church run by her uncle, James Bellar, who would tell them their siblings had to have children with one another in order to prepare for the apocalypse and repopulate the earth. Serah Bellar said, “He’d always talk about the end of the world and how you’d reproduce with your siblings. All the kids would have to go, whether they wanted to or not— even if you were sick, you had to go, it didn’t matter. Anytime he’d say anything, I’d just kind of repeat it in my head, like, how messed up it kind of sounded. He’d always talk about the end of the world and how you’d reproduce with your siblings."



 

 

That uncle "Jim", a self-proclaimed apostle, denied the claims in a statement to Law and Crime, calling it a "complete lie." James Bellar said, "I am a Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ and stand as witness to the Truth. How people react to that is on them." The parents have each pleaded not guilty and were given $1 million bonds. It’s unclear where Serah is today, but Athens County Prosecutor Keller Blackburn assured the public of her safety.  



 

 



 

 

 



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