With friends like these … a jury has found a former family friend guilty of having molested girls who were 5, 8 and 13 at the time.
Gary Gruber, 52, of Santa Ana, is scheduled to be sentenced May 16 at the North Justice Center in Fullerton.
Gruber had befriended a fellow he met while both were serving sentences at Theo Lacy county jail, a friendship that continued once both were kicked loose. When the friend and his wife would go out Saturday nights, they would leave their kids with "Uncle Gary."
The couple's oldest daughter confessed to a church counselor that she had been repeatedly molested by Gruber over a three-year span, which included him having her sleep with him in his bed beginning when she was 10.
Follow-up Santa Ana police investigation led to the evidence that Gruber also had his way with the girl's sisters, who were 5 and 8 at the time. He was arrested as his home for lewd and lascivious acts with a child under 14, sexual penetration by threat of retaliation and continuous sexual abuse of a child.
The family entered counseling.
A jury in Fullerton found Gruber guilty on Monday.