UPDATE: Demolition of Earl Bradley House Denied - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

UPDATE: Demolition of Earl Bradley House Denied

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Bradley lived inside of this historic home at 344 Savannah Road in Lewes (Source: WBOC) Bradley lived inside of this historic home at 344 Savannah Road in Lewes (Source: WBOC)
Former Delaware pediatrician and convicted pedophile Earl Bradley. Former Delaware pediatrician and convicted pedophile Earl Bradley.

LEWES, Del. - About two months after the property owner applied to demolish the home formerly owned by Earl Bradley, The Lewes Historic Preservation Commission denied the request. Their decision came after a vote following a public hearing Thursday night.

Earl Bradley is often considered the most horrific pedophile in American history, molesting 103 children, as young as three-months-old, while working as a Lewes pediatrician. Bradley is now behind bars, serving multiple life sentences. Police discovered videos, created by Bradley, capturing his horrific actions.  

The property, located at 344 Savannah Road in downtown Lewes, was donated to the Bethel United Methodist Church. Since receiving the property, the church has struggled to sell it due to a "stigma" attached to it. For this reason, Pastor Earle Baker said demolition is their best option. 

"We're asking (the commission) to make an exception," he said. "Because Bradley's heinous acts were so unparalleled in American history."

The home is located in the historic district of Lewes, which creates a roadblock for destruction. Chairperson for the Historic Preservation Commission Elaine Simmerman said that the rules on demolition are very strict. 

"We're bound very tightly by the regulations of the town," she said. 

Simmerman said that there are always exceptions to the code. However she said it was important to follow the code, and not public emotions. 

"I think all of us as individuals," she said. "Have a lot of compassion. But it is our goal to stay objective about this." 

Attorneys for the church released 14 arguments that they planned to make in front of the commission. One of those arguments focused on limiting the amount of pain created for Bradley's victims. 

"The presence of the Bradley House in Lewes," the document said. "Is a serious impediment to the healing and recovery of Bradley's victims..." 

Some in town like Lora Luzier agreed the house should be destroyed. 

"For the victims it probably brings back a lot of bad emotions," she said. "A lot of terrible thoughts if they drive by of what happened and who lived there. So I say definitely. Have it demolished.” 

Meanwhile neighbor Patrick Kehding disagreed, saying it's important to preserve historic homes. 

"Are you going to tear the top off of Beebe hospital," he said. "Because the doctor practiced there? Tear up the streets because he walked on them? I don't excuse Dr. Bradley's crimes. But he's in jail. He's incarcerated... What about the hundreds of people that lived here in the century before Dr. Bradley."

Baker said that the home has been vandalized and damaged by general decay, including mold and asbestos. He said this is yet another reason to demolish the building. 

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