Burbine pleads not guilty, held 90 days without bail
WOBURN, Mass. (WHDH) -- The Wakefield man accused of child sex abuse was arraigned Wednesday morning at Middlesex Superior Court.
John Burbine, 49, entered a not guilty plea to 100 counts of rape and battery of 13 babies and toddlers. Prosecutors said one victim was just 8 days old at the time of the alleged abuse.
“The defendant was brought into the homes of these children by their parents to protect, care for and keep them safe, and in fact violated them in every way possible,” said Katelyn Draper, assistant district attorney.
Burbine is accused of gaining access to the children through his wife’s tutoring and child care business. The couple advertised by providing parents with overnight newborn care.
Burbine is a level 1 sex offender from a 1989 case. Prosecutors said his wife knew that, but still sent him into the children’s homes.
Prosecutors said Burbine video recorded the alleged abuse. Court documents said, “In one movie, someone knocks on the changing room door and the defendant tells that person to ‘wait a minute’ while he continues to assault BOY 4.”
“The charges are disturbing. I think John would agree,” said Bill Barabino, Burbine’s defense attorney.
Burbine was brought to court under heavy guard. He was moved to a different jail because he had received threats.
“He was in Cambridge Jail, after Cambridge Jail it was an uncomfortable process like it is for anybody, especially with those charges and they moved him to Billerica,” said Barabino.
In court, Burbine’s attorney chose not to argue against a dangerousness finding against his client.
“So in this case we knew that he would detain him, so why waste time? Why play games? Let’s move on,” said Barabino.
Because Burbine is seen as a danger to others he was ordered to be held without bail for 90 days after which there would be a $1 million cash bail.
It appears no victims’ families were in court to face the man accused of abusing their children.
“They have all requested that their privacy and confidentiality be respected, that their identities not be known,” said Draper.
Burbine's wife was charged with six counts of reckless endangerment of a child and two counts of operating an unlicensed daycare business. She is under house arrest and is only allowed out for one hour a day. She was arraigned in October and is due back in court next week for a pre-trial hearing.