Offender's mother speaks up in Bettendorf sex abuse case

Exclusive: Bettendorf mother of man accused of sexual assault speaks out

BETTENDORF, Iowa - Bettendorf police arrested 58-year-old Gregg Thurston Friday morning after reports say he violated a restraining order. But Thurston's mother says it's a misunderstanding. 

Thurston was first arrested in March of this year after a girl told police Thurston touched her inappropriately. The girl says he lured her into his home and she went inside thinking he had candy. Police say the girl got scared and ran out of Thurston's house, when Thurston chased after her. The girl's father saw the scene and intervened. 

A source told Local 4 News that Thurston was accused of attempting to look into the window of his accuser's home Friday morning. 

This is the third count of sexual assault against Thurston. He was previously arrested for assault with intent to commit sexual abuse, and indecent contact with a child. 

But in a Local 4 News exclusive, Thurston's mother says her son is mentally handicapped, and doesn't mean any harm. 

"No. Heaven's no. He never has. Never, never. Not family, friends, the neighborhood," she said.

She says they've lived in their Bettendorf home for 53 years and have never had problems in the past. She says while her son shouldn't have done anything to his accuser, she believes he doesn't understand the gravity of his actions. 

She claims her son was just standing on the side of his home without any harmful intention on Friday morning and doesn't think charges of sexual abuse are fair.  

"No I don't. I mean you can't stand out in your own yard or stand right here at the side of the house without being accused of something? "

Police say Thurston admitted to the details of the crime back in March. He was released the same day from Scott County jail on a $1000 bond. 


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