Child Molester Sentenced to Life In Prison: SONOMA COUNTY District Attorney

Child Molester Sentenced to Life In Prison: SONOMA COUNTY District Attorney

Brian Douglas Schmitt Sr. sentenced to thirty years to life in state prison following a jury trial for felony sex offenses against a child

The Verdict

Brian Douglas Schmitt Sr. of Petaluma, aged 78, has been sentenced to spend thirty years to life in state prison following a jury trial for committing four felony sex offenses against a child. The Honorable Robert LaForge presided over the trial, which took place in January. The jury found Schmitt guilty of all the charges related to sexual penetration of a child who was ten years of age or younger, as well as committing lewd acts with a child under the age of fourteen. Deputy District Attorney Brian Morimune led the prosecution, with assistance from District Attorney Investigator Stephen Bussell. Seargent Ronald Flores was in charge of the investigation carried out by the Petaluma Police Department.

The Victim’s Experience

The victim and their family underwent a devastating experience at the hands of Schmitt, who had established himself as a trusted member of their family. Schmitt used this trust to gain access to the child and carry out the despicable acts of abuse, which continued until the abuse was disclosed to the police in July of 2022. The victim and their family will carry the emotional scars of the abuse for years to come. The trial and subsequent sentencing are aimed at providing some solace to the victim and their family.


Schmitt was given the maximum sentence permitted for his crimes, i.e., thirty years to life in state prison. Judge LaForge deemed Schmitt a danger to the community and a danger to children. Schmitt’s request for leniency and his apology to the victim’s family citing marijuana use as a cause of his behavior were rejected by Judge LaForge. During the sentencing hearing, Judge LaForge reminded Schmitt of the incredible damage he had caused to an entire family and confronted him with the long-lasting impact of his actions.

Importance of Protecting Children from Sexual Offences

The case of Brian Douglas Schmitt Sr. highlights the importance of protecting children from sexual offenses and the significance of bringing offenders to justice. Sexual offenses against minors cause significant emotional harm to the victims and their families, resulting in long-lasting physical and psychological effects. It is imperative that institutions and individuals take appropriate steps to protect children from sexual abuse. Moreover, perpetrators need to be held accountable to ensure justice for victims and deter similar crimes. Society’s responsibility is to create a safe environment for children to thrive free from sexual exploitation and abuse.

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