VA: Top Republican Donor Killed in Prison After Serving Nearly Two Decades for Sexually Assaulting His Own Children

Source: 8/8/21

A once-lauded Republican donor and former businessman was killed in prison late Tuesday by another inmate, the Associated Press and a collection of news organizations reported this week.

According to the Virginia Department of Corrections, Mark A. Grethen, 63, who was initially not identified by name, died “following an apparent attack by another inmate inside the victim’s cell.” The attack occurred at the Lawrenceville Correctional Center, a for-profit prison operated by The GEO Group, Inc., a news release indicated.

“The victim was serving a 26-year sentence for crimes including forcible sodomy and aggravated sexual battery,” the DOC continued.  “The apparent assailant is serving a 22-year sentence for crimes including robbery, malicious wounding, and assault by an inmate or probationer on an employee.  This incident is being investigated as a homicide.”

The Norfolk, Va. Virginian-Pilot indicated that Grethen, previously of Suffolk, Va., was a businessman who had been “convicted of sexually assaulting children.”

The Commonwealth’s sex offender registry lists a litany of July 16, 2001 convictions under Grethen’s name:  two counts of indecent liberties with a child by a custodian; two counts of forcible sodomy; and two counts of aggravated sexual battery.  At least two of the counts involved minors, according to the registry records.

A 2006 federal court opinion recapped some of the details of Grethen’s case.  Judge Rebecca Smith said Grethen’s grievances about his defense attorney were “frivolous” — “almost to the point of being disrespectful” given the facts:

It must be remembered that petitioner abused his own children, who were, at the time, approximately five and three years of age. The matter was discovered only when petitioner’s wife found him engaged in sexual behavior with one of the children and found the children engaged in sexual behavior on another occasion.

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Not much was reported about the man’s death, the investigation, or charges against the guy that killed him. Seems more a smear against the Republican party in Virginia than anything else.

It is only a story to the main stream news media because he was a Republican.

Well he almost made it out he only had hafe of a decade to go. I wonder how his wife feels about his death given the fact that her children were abused by this guy and her testimony that sent him to his death. Sounds like he was rich I hope his 2 kids inherits all his money and assets.

Good luck

Last edited 1 year ago by AERO1

Comments seem to be missing some important points in this story.

  1. Vast majority of these assaults on offenders happen in ‘for profit’ institutions.
  2. The assailant had a history of this behavior. Why put a violent inmate into a cell with a non violent one, especially an offender.
  3. I feel his political history was cited not to rip on the Republican Party, but to lay the foundation that this man felt he had privileges because of his political actions and was looking for special attention not granted others.
  4. As for his family, I hope they don’t have the same vindictive attitude shown in the comments here.

Seems like a well connected guy who made things hard as he could for the rent-a-thugs at Geo. Hopefully his estate sues and smashes them, gutting their company.

And Will Allen wants me to think? Even the commonwealth doesn’t even know what the common goal is in lives juriouris prudence. Yes sex crimes are bad enough. Guess their is no segration in prison systems or does Governments think in their own exploration. Prisoners killing prisoners. Guess phone tapping is a spy who loves me episode for another go around this mulberry bush. So who trumps the chump or is silence golden. Talk about prison protection.