Judge allows wife of accused child rapist to attend church services while she awaits trial on endangerment charges

WOBURN — Marian Burbine, the Wakefield woman who ran a child care service her husband allegedly exploited to rape and molest 13 toddlers, was given permission Thursday to leave her home to attend church on Sunday.

Marian Burbine has been under house arrest since October when she was arraigned in Middlesex Superior Court on six counts of reckless endangerment of a child and two counts of running an unlicensed day care care business.

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Under revised conditions of her house arrest imposed Thursday, Burbine can now leave her home for 90 minutes on weekdays, rather than an hour. She can also keep legal and medical appointments, as well as job appointments approved by the probation department.

Middlesex County prosecutors did not object to the changes.

Burbine did not speak at the hearing or answer media questions outside the courthouse. Her lawyer, John Ruehrwein Jr., also declined to comment after the brief hearing.

According to Middlesex District Attorney Gerard T. Leone Jr. and court papers filed by prosecutors, Marian Burbine’s husband, John Burbine, videotaped himself as he allegedly raped and molested 13 children, including one who was just 8 days old, over a two year period.

John Burbine has been indicted on 100 charges, including 40 counts of aggravated rape of a child, and has pleaded not guilty to all charges and is being held without bail.

According to court records filed in the separate cases, Marian Burbine knew that her husband was a convicted sex offender, but still convinced some of her clients to allow her husband to care for the children by himself. On other occasions, Marian Burbine promised to be the caregiver, but would call in sick at the last minute, clearing the way for her husband to step in.

Records show that she knew her husband had been convicted of indecent assault against a child in 1989 and accused of sexually abusing young boys in 2005 and 2009. Prosecutors have not accused her of being aware of the alleged abuse over the last two years, but court documents suggest she misled parents into allowing her husband to take her place in caring for their children.

Marian Burbine has pleaded not guilty to the charges. She is due back in court Feb. 13, and is scheduled to go on trial June 25.