by MEG COYLE / KING 5 News
Posted on August 10, 2011 at 6:47 PM
Updated Thursday, Aug 11 at 12:28 PM
TACOMA, Wash. -- Police believe Scott Hamrick sexually abused at least four of his foster children and worry there may be more victims, possibly friends.
Hamrick knew police were investigating him and killed himself rather than face the accusations against him. His wife, Drew Ann Hamrick is not charged with sex abuse, but police believe she knew what was going on.
Pierce County firefighter Lt. Scott Hamrick's home in Eatonville is not only where he took his own life, but also where he allegedly stole the innocence of children he took into his care as a foster parent.
Pierce County Sheriff's Department had been investigating Hamrick after neighbors and family members told investigators they believed he'd been molesting his foster children.
Court documents show it was Hamrick's son who called police, after his mother Drew Anne admitted Hamrick had been molesting four of his young foster daughters. Today, Drew Anne Hamrick was charged for her role in the abuse. Prosecutors alleged she "repeatedly locked the victim in a room with a pad lock on the outside of the door and denied her food for days. The victim forced to sleep on a blanket on a concrete floor." Court documents also allege she went without food for 3 to 4 days at a time, and was forced to relieve herself in a bucket in her room.
Police allege Drew Anne Hamrick was jealous and angry. The victim says Drew Anne made her promise not to tell and asked her "why do you hate your dad? It's not like he raped you" and "he just touched you." Scott Hamrick was allegedly crying and told her that he would kill himself.
Hamrick was a veteran firefighter who spent the last 27 years working for Central Pierce Fire and Rescue in Puyallup. He resigned suddenly on June 23. One week later he committed suicide. Sheriff's deputies say he left a note saying he didn't want to go to prison.
Drew Anne Hamrick is charged with unlawful imprisonment, witness tampering, and criminal mistreatment. And they're still investigating if anyone else knew about the abuse and if there might be more victims. Drew Anne Hamrick's first court appearance could happen Thursday.