Brutalized: McMartins and Sex in the Nursery

Sex charges at a nursery

Wearing Snoopy earrings and a purple coat dotted with Teddy-bear pins, Virginia McMartin, 76, a white-haired widow, sat in a wheelchair last week in a Los Angeles superior court, her head bowed low. McMartin, three relatives and three other women faced charges that they sodomized, fondled and raped more than 100 preschool children at a day-care center run by McMartin in Manhattan Beach, a coastal suburb of Los Angeles.

To frighten their victims into silence, the teachers allegedly cut off the ears of rabbits and other small animals in...

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