County man sentenced to more than 1000 years in prison for sexual abuse

On Monday, 39-year-old Robert Franks of San Marcos was convicted of continuous sexual abuse, aggravated sexual assault of a child and indecency with a child.

After adding up all the counts, the jury sentenced him to two life sentences, plus more than one-thousand years in prison, all consecutive.

“That's a total of all the 99 year sentences, plus all the 20 year sentences,” said Wes Mau, Hays County criminal district attorney.

Prosecutors said for years, Franks sexually abused two girls, 9 and 10 who were related to him and in his care. They said, had one of the girls not come forward, the abuse could have continued.

“In June of 2016 the initial outcry was made by one of our child victims,” said Mau.

Both girls testified in court, and that's what Mau says influenced the jury's decision on the verdict, as well as the sentencing. 

“It really just sends more of a message than it has a practical effect in this case. But it does send a message to not expect leniency if you commit these kinds of crimes,” said Mau.

Mau said often times offenders may get a slap on the wrist in child abuse cases. 

“I hope it tells the offenders, this is not a risk you want to take,” said Mau.

However, he hopes this jury's message resonates in hays county and beyond.

“A child should be able to rely on that person to protect them, to preserve their innocence, not to take it away,” said Mau, referring to Franks.