A month-long investigation by Steuben County Child Protective Services has resulted in the arrest of three residents.
49-year-old Roger Taft and 36-year-old Natalie Burgess, both of Thurston, are accused of intentionally allowing a child under the age of 17 to remain alone in a residence with a Level Three sex offender. Its believed by investigators Taft and Burgess knew of the offender’s likelihood to re-offend, after repeatedly agreeing to a safety plan that forbids unsupervised contact with that individual. Burgess and Taft were charged with endangering the welfare of a child, while Burgess was also charged with falsifying business records.
66-year-old Allen Lafler, also of Thurston, was also arrested in connection with the investigation on a charge of endangering the welfare of a child. The Level 3 offender is accused of subjecting a child under the age of 11 to sexual contact. Lafler was convicted in 1992 of having intercourse with a 7-year-old girl. He served 5 years in prison.
Burgess and Lafler were sent to jail, while Taft was released on an appearance ticket.