Missouri’s GOP House Speaker and the GOP House Ethics Committee chair say a fellow Republican state lawmaker who resigned Tuesday is unfit for office and should be the subject of a thorough investigation by law enforcement.

State Rep. Rick Roeber (R-Lee’s Summit) resigned Tuesday (January 2021 photo courtesy of Tim Bommel at House Communications)

State Rep. Rick Roeber (R-Lee’s Summit), who resigned today, was elected to the House in November. His district includes Lee’s Summit and Greenwood. His now adult children have alleged that he abused them when they were young.

Here is the full statement from House Speaker Rob Vescovo (R-Arnold) and Ethics Chairman Travis Fitzwater (R-Holts Summit). It was issued Tuesday afternoon:

“Our caucus and our institution (the Missouri House) have a zero tolerance policy for anyone who would endanger the well-being of a child, and it’s clear that Rick Roeber’s heinous actions make him not only unfit for office, but should also make him the subject of a thorough investigation by law enforcement. To that end we have communicated with the appropriate law enforcement officials to share our concerns about the risk he may pose to other children. The House Ethics Committee did exemplary work in investigating the troubling allegations made by his children and found them to be credible. For far too long, his children were ignored and the abuses they suffered were swept under the rug. We are appalled by the disturbing details uncovered by the committee and ashamed of the way the system failed to protect them from harm. With his resignation today, we take an important step to protect the integrity of the House as an institution, but it’s far more important that we do all we can to seek justice for his children and to ensure he never again causes harm to another child. His resignation allows him to walk away from his duties as a representative, but we cannot allow him to once again walk away from the children he victimized. The committee will release its full report next week and we will continue to communicate with law enforcement on this matter,” the statement reads.

“The Independent” reported Tuesday that Missouri House legislative leaders have asked Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker to help ensure the safety of a minor child, with whom Roeber reportedly has regular contact. Representative Roeber has not been charged with a crime.

The Missouri House Ethics Committee has scheduled Wednesday, Thursday and Friday hearings in Jefferson City, but it’s unclear if they’re related to Roeber.

Roeber is a former project manager for Sprint, and also served as a chaplain for KC Rescue Mission.

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