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Dad who tried to ban LGBT books from schools charged with molesting child

A man who wanted to ban LGBT books from local schools because of sexual images has been charged molesting a child, court documents have shown.

Ryan Utterback, a 29-year-old parent from Missouri, USA, has allegedly fondled a child and was charged with a misdemeanour in the fourth-degree for domestic assault.

He was already facing misdemeanour charges of furnishing or attempting to furnish pornographic material to a minor in a separate case, the Daily Mail reported.

Utterback has been accused of two instances of child molestation in 2020, allegedly touching a 12-year-old girl under her clothes in one case, and rubbing another teen's leg underneath her jeans in another.

The resident had been advocating for the removal of several LGBTQ books featuring sexual imagery or situations, with Utterback saying it is his right as a parent to choose what his children are exposed to.

Speaking to MBC in November, prior to his arrest, Utterback said: "I definitely understand their struggles, and it's not lost on me.

"But, again, those conversations are to be had at home, and only I have the intimate understanding of what is and isn't appropriate for my children."

Last year, Utterback reportedly began showing pornography to a young girl from when she was roughly four-years-old.

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Utterback had appeared previously at a school board meeting on October 2021, presenting large print copies of two books in particular that he was wanting banned from the North Kansas City School libraries.

The books in question, a graphic novel 'Fun Home' from Alison Bechdel and 'All Boys Aren't Blue' from George M Johnson, both explore gender and sexuality for teens and young people.

Another member of the parent conference at the school board meeting had likened the two books to soliciting a minor.

The number of children Utterback has is unknown, but he identified himself as a parent at a number of school board meetings.

Mary O'Hara, the rapid response manager for LGBTQ media advocacy group GLAAD told WMBF that the book bans were dangerous.

She said: "Book ban advocates have long tried to inaccurately claim that LGBTQ representation in books, films, TV and ads is 'unsuitable' or 'obscene', while other media with narratives and themes about opposite-sex relationships – even those with graphic sex or violence – are not targeted."

Utterback is set to appear in court on March 10.

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