A child’s grandparents can be some of their favorite people. Because they’re part of the family, but not directly connected like parents, grandparents can often be easier on them and therefore very desirable people to spend time with. However, when a grandparent abuses their close relationship with a child, as one 55-year-old Montana man did, it can be one of the most disgusting and heinous crimes imaginable.
Now, a similar tragic event occurred when Mikeal Shane Pruett, 55, was found guilty of a horrific crime that stole a young girl’s childhood and the affection of a grandfather. Pruett, who had been given responsibility for his two granddaughters, utterly breached the sacrosanct relationship between grandparent and grandchild.
Pruett was judged accountable for raping his 11-year-old granddaughter, leading to her untimely conception. In August, the young girl who was the victim of this heinous conduct gave birth to a kid through incestuous rape. It is impossible to emphasize the mental and physical pain she endured since she was robbed of both her innocence and the possibility to have a loving relationship with her grandfather.
The court showed no leniency toward Pruett, sentencing him to 200 years in prison, effectively ensuring that he spends the rest of his life behind bars. His punishment reflects the severity of his crimes, as he was not only found guilty of raping one granddaughter but also molesting her younger sister. The Montana court system imposed a century-long sentence for each of these despicable acts.
Ravalli County Attorney Bill Fulbright emphasized the necessity of severe punishment, stating, “In my view, over the course of his life, he has set no boundaries when it comes to committing sexual offenses. Everything about the defendant’s life and conduct in Ravalli County has earned him a 100-year sentence.”
The situation was further complicated by the fact that Pruett was not only the girls’ biological grandfather but also their legal guardian. This position of power and authority granted him unrestricted access to his victims, allowing him to abuse them for years without detection.
Pruett’s criminal history reveals a disturbing pattern of child molestation, specifically targeting very young girls. Despite this knowledge, the local authorities granted him sole custody of his granddaughters, unwittingly setting the stage for further abuse.
Pruett has a longtime history of a predatory type of sexual conduct toward younger females and “seems to lack any kind of semblance of a conscience,” the judge said.
The presiding judge, Ravalli County District Judge Jeffrey Langton, noted Pruett’s apparent lack of conscience and his propensity for taking advantage of any opportunity to harm his young charges. Langton passionately argued that Pruett must remain incarcerated for the rest of his life, stating that his release would pose a significant threat to the safety of other children.
In the end, the judge made the right decision, ensuring that Pruett will not be eligible for parole until he reaches the age of 105. This effectively guarantees that he will spend the remainder of his life in prison, protecting countless other young girls from a similar fate.