Former Cake Drummer Pete McNeal Going to Prison for Child Molestation – UPDATED
A former drummer for the indie band Cake has been sentenced to prison on child molestation charges. Pete McNeal will be serving 15 years to life in a California state prison for molesting a 3-year-old girl five years ago, according to the Los Angeles Times.
Court documents reveal that McNeal, 48, molested the child during a Thanksgiving party where he was a guest in 2009. He was found guilty of “one count of oral copulation of a child 10 years old or younger” last year. He will also be registered as a sex offender.
McNeal has previously been convicted on a misdemeanor charge of attempting to molest a 6-year-old while volunteering at a Los Angeles school two weeks after the Thanksgiving dinner in question. He was reportedly given three years probation in that case.
McNeal played with the band for four years starting in 2001, when he replaced another drummer. While he never appeared on a Cake album, he does show up in the video for ‘Love You Madly.’ He also performed with Norah Jones and Mike Doughty.
The Los Angeles Times also notes that an earlier trial over this same offense resulted in a hung jury.
UPDATE: McNeal's lawyer is appealing the sentence, and released this statement: "Half a dozen friends and family of Peter Ivan McNeal, having known him collectively for over 100 years, spoke on his behalf at his sentencing. His family stated with vehemence: 'We stand strong with Peter, accompanied by our extended family and swath of intelligent friends across the country and abroad, who, along with our legal counsel, will take our fight against this gross failure of justice to a higher court. We will do so until the time that Peter is free and his name is cleared.'"