Independence man was sentenced to life in prison for child sex crime

A 35-year-old man was sentenced Thursday in Platte County Circuit Court to life in prison after admitting to sexually abusing a girl he was babysitting.

Shannon Langley of Independence was charged with first-degree statutory sodomy and child enticement. Prosecutors said the assault occurred in August 2015. Langley admitted he tried to kiss the 10-year-old victim and then assaulted her when he said he needed to “check her for bugs.”

Platte County Prosecutor Eric Zahnd said Langley had abused several other children in Jackson County. Zahnd said he used those other incidents to charge Langley as a predatory sexual offender. Missouri law requires that defendants who commit multiple sexual offenses be sentenced to life in prison.

“We used every tool the law gives us to make sure that this defendant has molested his last child,” Zahnd said in a statement. “His days of hurting kids are finally over.”

Zahnd said after the assault the victim sent a Facebook message to her mother that led her mother to believe that something was wrong. The mother immediately came home and the victim told her about the abuse.

Langley faces two sex-related criminal charges, including one that involves a child, in Jackson County. Zahnd said he used those criminal allegations to secure a life sentence on the Platte County convictions.

Glenn E. Rice: 816-234-4341, @GRicekcstar