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Former school board member who fathered a child with teen girl sentenced to prison

May 21, 2010 | 11:43 am

A former Ventura County school board member who fathered a child with a young girl has been sentenced to 17 years in prison for sexual abuse.

Brian E. Martin, 49, a member of the Rio School District board since 2006, was sentenced Thursday after earlier pleading guilty to continuously sexually abusing the girl from the time she was 10 and inflicting great bodily harm by impregnating her. Martin also pleaded guilty to an additional charge of committing a lewd act on a child.

After Martin's guilty plea, Ventura County supervisors ordered a review of the county's procedures for dealing with child abuse complaints. The girl, now 15, is among four children who Martin and his wife, Cristina Carreño Martin, took in after a relative of hers with drug problems abandoned them six years ago. 

The girl's baby boy, born in December, has been placed with an adoptive family. According to Rio School Board President Tim Blaylock, the abuse emerged after the girl "confided to some of her classmates." In interviews with social workers, the girl denied any sexual relationship with Martin, Blaylock told the Times last month.

The Martins have been active in many civic causes. He volunteered with Little League. She ran for the state Assembly in 2006 and is president of Ventura Marina Rotary International.

-- Richard Winton