Tuesday, February 22, 2011
The adoptive parents of a boy who has been missing since 1999 have waived a preliminary hearing on theft charges. Doug and Valerie Herrman are accused of cashing thousands of dollars in government subsidy checks even after Adam Herrman was no longer in their care.
The Herrman's appeared in Butler County District Court this afternoon in front of Judge David Ricke. Both answered simply yes or no when asked if they understood what they were doing. Ricke scheduled jury trials in both cases for June 21.
After the hearing, Butler County Attorney Darrin Devinney said he continues to pursue the case to the fullest extent of the law. Jan Satterfield, the previous county attorney, had been widely quoted as saying she would convene a grand jury and pursue first degree murder charges against the Herrman's, despite the fact that the boy's body has never been found.
Devinney said today that he believes it is premature to speculate on whether or not he would file a murder charge against the Herrman's, but that authorities continue to investigate the case rigorously.
February 22, 2011
An El Dorado couple is due in court to face charges they fraudulently collected adoption subsidies long after their son disappeared in 1999.
The preliminary hearing for Doug and Valerie Herrman is Tuesday
at the Butler County courthouse in El Dorado.
The couple is accused of collecting $52,800 in state adoption
subsidies from May 1999 to July 2005 while falsely claiming Adam
Herrman as a dependent. Their lawyer has called the allegation a
technical financial matter.
The Herrmans have said 11-year-old Adam ran away in 1999 from
the mobile home park in Towanda where the family lived.
Adam remains missing. His absence wasn't reported until his
older sister contacted authorities in December 2008.