Five and a half years after being charged with two counts of second-degree murder, a convicted sex offender from Oregon has been found guilty of five of six counts filed against him.
In August of 2003, Jason Osborn, 41, allowed four 14-year-old boys to take turns hood surfing and driving his fiancees car on a gravel road near Walnut Shade, which is in Taney County.
Osborn was also charged with two counts of enticement of a child and three counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
According to investigators, two of the boys were sitting in the windows of the vehicle, one was on the hood, and the other was driving when Osborn yanked on the steering wheel causing it swerve and slam into a tree. It then it burst into flames.
Witnesses testified that Osborn ran from the crash, leaving the boys to fend for themselves.
Killed in the fiery crash were Dustin Riseman and Joshua Sparling who were both 14 years-old.
Before moving to Rockaway Beach, Osborn, had gone by the name of Leon Shirten Dronet Jr., and lived in Oregon.
Before changing his name to Osborn, Leon Dronet, was convicted in 1987 of attempted third-degree sodomy of a 14-year-old boy in a public restroom. That same year, he pleaded guilty to second-degree sexual abuse of a minor.
In 1989, Dronet pleaded guilty to two felony counts of sodomy and sexual abuse of a 10-year-old boy.
He was sentenced to 25 years in the Oregon State Hospital for that crime, but was discharged in February 2001 on an appellate issue.
Dronet moved to Stone County after his release and registered as a sex offender there. But when he moved to Rockaway Beach, cops were not notified when Dronet, by then using the name Jason Osborn, began working at a restaurant there.
The two surviving boys in the crash say that Osborn had been offering them cigarettes, cough syrup and alcohol.
He also made sexual comments to the boys, attempted to kiss them and asked them for sexual favors.
Taney County Prosecutor Jeff Merrell says that Judge John Moody didn't feel there was enough evidence to convict Osborn on one of the enticement charges.
Osborn, was ordered to undergo a mental examination in 2006, which he refused.
In 2007, after working off and on as his own attorney in his case, Osborn agreed to undergo the exam and was declared incompetent to stand trial.
Osborn was then ordered to Fulton State Hospital where he was recently found competent to stand trial.
When Osborn is sentenced on March 6, 2009 in Wright County, he could receive two life sentences on the second degree murder convictions; a life sentence in the state of Missouri is thirty years.
He will receive time in jail on the enticement and endangering the welfare of a child charges. The only question is if the judge will make the sentences concurrent (at the same time,) or consecutive (one right after the other.)
The case was moved to Wright County from Taney County on a change of venue.
Jason Osborn has been sentenced to at least two fifteen year sentences in prison for the deaths of Dustin Riseman and Josh Sparling.
He was also sentenced to three five year sentences for endangering the welfare of a child.
Taney County Prosecutor Jeff Merrell told me that the judge that sentenced Osborn didn't specify if the two 15 year-sentences for the teens deaths were to run consecutive (one after the other) or concurrent (at the same time.)
He says state statute says that at least one of the fifteen year-sentences will have to be served consecutive to one of the five year sentences that Osborn received for endangering the welfare of a child.
That means that Osborn will be locked up for at least eighteen years (minus the time that he has already spent in jail awaiting trial.)
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