Former Gering City Councilman Pleads No Contest In Molestation Case


     A former Gering city council member has pleaded No Contest to misdemeanor Intentional Child Abuse, Not Resulting in injury in a molestation case from last year involving a teenage girl.

      53-year old Parish Abel entered the plea as part of an agreement that saw prosecutors drop single counts of felony witness tampering and misdemeanor intruding on a person without consent.

      Abel resigned from the Gering city council a few weeks prior to his arrest in Feb and left the Scottsbluff fire department after 19 years following his arrest. He will be sentenced Sept 24 in Scotts Bluff County Court.

      According to court documents, the Gering police department received a complaint in late January from a teenage girl who said Abel had entered her room in July of last year and attempted to lift her blanket while she was naked. 

      The case was given to the Nebraska State Patrol, which interviewed the girl, her mother, and Abel. 

        The teen said she pretended to be asleep when Abel came into her room and that she kept moving her legs and body to stay covered until he left. When she accused him by text, Abel denied anything had happened, but asked her not to tell her mother.