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Sheriff's Department Psychologist Charged With Molesting Two Children

Michael Dane ward was charged with 10 felonies (Photo by Paul Matthew Photography via Shutterstock)
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A psychologist with the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department was charged Monday with sexually abusing a young boy and a young girl. Michael Dane Ward, 44, was arrested Thursday and charged with 10 felonies on Monday: four counts of lewd act on a child, two counts of forcible lewd act on a child under 14, three counts of forcible oral copulation or sexual penetration with a child 10 or younger, and one count of sexual intercourse or sodomy with a child 10 or younger, according to a release from the L.A. County District Attorney's Office.

One of the children was a boy who was nine with the alleged abuse began in August 2014. The other was a girl who was 10 when the alleged abuse began in August of 2015. The D.A.'s Office states the alleged abuse on both children continued through March 31, 2016. The sheriff's department's Special Victims Bureau began investigating Ward after the allegations were reported.

The sheriff's department said Ward did not meet the children via his work with the department, Fox 11 reports. Ward's job entailed training and advising law enforcement, according to the L.A. Times.

Ward, who pleaded not guilty to the charges, will face life in prison if he is convicted as charged.