News and Tribune

August 29, 2013

Children’s home employee charged with having sex with 17-year-old

Acts allegedly occurred at the Kingsfield Children’s Home in Sellersburg, police say


SELLERSBURG — A 29-year-old employee of Sellersburg’s Kingsfield Children’s Home has been charged with having sex with a 17-year-old resident of the facility.

Darci Stabeno, of Pekin, was preliminarily charged Thursday with C felony child seduction by the Sellersburg Police Department.

SPD Chief Russ Whelan said Stabeno is believed to have had sexual intercourse and oral sex with the boy on two occasions within the last three weeks at the facility.

Both alleged encounters are believed to have occurred at the facility while Stabeno was on duty.

Whelan said Stabeno’s official title at Kingsfield Children’s Home has not been determined, but she is believed to have worked night-time hours after the house parents and children went to bed. He said her duties included checking on the residents during the night and preparing breakfast.

Stabeno brought herself into the Sellersburg Police Department Thursday afternoon after she was contacted by an investigator. An interview was conducted, at which time she gave an account of sexual conduct that mirrored statements made to police by the child earlier in the day, Whelan said.

Stabeno was placed under arrest at the end of the interview and transported to the Michael L. Becher Adult Correctional Complex.

Whelan said his department received a call from a director of the facility Wednesday of possible inappropriate contact between Stabeno and the child.

How Kingsfield Children’s Home officials were made aware of the possible crimes was not disclosed by Whelan.

Stabeno is being held under a $15,000 court-cash bond, according to jail officials.

According to the facility’s website and Facebook page, Kingsfield, on Utica Street, offers counseling services, spiritual guidance, an independent living program and other services for males and females between the ages of six and 21. Kingsfield accepts children who are from troubled homes or who are experiencing behavioral or emotional difficulty, with children being referred mainly by the Offices of Families and Children across the state of Indiana, its Facebook page states.