Bail was denied Wednesday for a former Silicon Valley mother accused of hosting alcohol-fueled parties for her teenage son and his friends where she encouraged them to drink and have sex with intoxicated underage girls.
Shannon Marie O'Connor, 47, appeared for arraignment in a Santa Clara courtroom where a judge also issued 15 protective orders for people authorities say were victims, including one of her two teenage sons, the San Jose Mercury News reported.
Defense attorney Sam Polverino argued that the prosecution's successful request to deny bail for his client denied her rights and was "inconsistent with due process," the Mercury News said. She's scheduled to enter a plea Dec. 17.
Prosecutors allege that from June 2020 to this May, O'Connor -- also known as Shannon Bruga -- held at least a half-dozen large parties and some smaller events in the Silicon Valley where she was then living. During the events, authorities said, she encouraged the mainly 14- and 15-year-old guests to drink and engage in sex acts.
A statement of facts filed in the case said she "discouraged the teens from telling their parents about the parties or calling for help when one of them passed out in their own vomit."
In some cases, O'Connor would allegedly Snapchat or text teens to leave their homes in the middle of the night and drink at her home, providing the alcohol, CBS San Francisco reported.
At one party at her Los Gatos home in December, authorities said, O'Connor handed a condom to a boy and pushed him into a room with an intoxicated girl. Both were minors. The girl was able to get away and locked herself in the bathroom, Santa Clara County District Attorney investigator Christina Hanks detailed in court filings.
O'Connor was extradited following her Oct. 9 arrest in the Boise suburb of Star, Idaho, where she moved with her sons after the last school year.
She was extradited to California on Tuesday to face 39 felony and misdemeanor charges, including sexual battery and child molestation. She's also facing three additional charges of grand theft tied to $120,000 in unauthorized charges on company credit cards from her former employer, including payments for clothing, limousine rides and alcohol delivery to her home.
O'Connor also is under investigation in Idaho over teen parties after authorities said they found 12 young people at her home when they served her arrest warrant.
The Ada County Sheriff's Office said in a press release deputies were investigating O'Connor after an Idaho family contacted reported O'Connor was harassing them. The family told investigators the harassment began after they met with O'Connor when she was looking for a home in Idaho but then tried to sever ties with her after finding out she was part of a sexual abuse investigation.
First published on October 21, 2021 / 6:24 AM
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