Shannon O’Connor, a 47-year-old California mom, is accused of throwing alcohol-fueled sex parties for her teenage son and his classmates.
The former Silicon Valley resident was arrested on Saturday in Ada County, Idaho, where she now lives, and is facing extradition to California, where she is facing dozens of criminal charges, including child molestation, sexual battery, and providing alcohol to minors.
Prosecutors allege that the minors attending O’Connor’s parties were enticed to drink to the point of unconsciousness, and that she would encourage the children to engage in sex acts while drunk, often non-consensually.
Investigator’s Report Details Drunken Sex Parties
According to a legal filing written by an investigator with Santa Clara County District Attorney’s office, O’Connor began hosting drinking parties for her then-14-year-old son and other children, mostly aged 14 and 15, in the summer of 2020 and continued to do so through April of this year.
The investigator’s report details dozens of gatherings where the teens drank alcohol — allegedly supplied by O’Connor — until they blacked out and vomited. Prosecutors wrote that O’Connor would contact the children before the parties on Snapchat to ask what specific beverages they wanted her to buy, that she would drink with them, and that she would allow them to sleep off their drunkenness at her home.
According to the county investigator, Shannon O’Connor had coached the teens on numerous occasions to lie to their parents about the gatherings and the drinking. In several instances, the investigator wrote, she personally assured parents that the parties would be supervised and would not involve alcohol.
On other occasions, authorities said O’Connor would tell the teens to sneak out of their homes, where she would pick them up and drive them to her house to drink.
The report also alleges that Shannon O’Connor would encourage the girls at her parties to perform sex acts with specific boys. When the girls said they did not want to, prosecutors said that O’Connor would pull them aside for a private conversation, where she would continue to persuade them and continue to offer them drinks.
On one occasion detailed by the investigator, O’Connor is said to have given a teen boy a condom before pushing him into a bedroom with a heavily intoxicated girl and shutting the door.
On another occasion, prosecutors wrote, O’Connor laughed when a teen girl told her that one of the boys had sexually assaulted her. The report also alleges an instance where O’Connor watched as one of the boys made sexual contact with a drunken girl who was unconscious in bed.
Shannon O’Connor, investigators believe, went to great lengths to cover up the activities. Prosecutors said that she rushed the drunken teens out of her home during a summer 2020 gathering when she believed her husband was on his way home.
According to the report, O’Connor issued a standing rule that the teens were not to discuss the parties with anyone who hadn’t attended them. One teen girl told the investigator that when O’Connor threatened to “spread rumors” about her if she spoke of the drunken gatherings.
Prosecutors Allege Physical Harm
Aside from drunken sex parties, authorities have accused O’Connor of allowing physical harm to come to the minors in her care.
In one incident in March, the report said, the 47-year-old allowed an unlicensed teen to drive her SUV in the school parking lot, while her son and his friend held on to the back of the vehicle. When the boy lost his grip and fell, he hit his head and was unconscious for “20 to 30 seconds.” He was later found to have suffered a concussion, according to the investigator. All three boys were reportedly drunk at the time.
In another episode detailed by prosecutors, O’Connor allegedly watched a teen boy “punching and kicking” an intoxicated girl at her home.
Shannon O’Connor in Idaho
When Shannon O’Connor, also known as Shannon Bruga, was arrested at her home in Star, Idaho, detectives said there were 10 underage boys and 2 underage girls in the house — most of whom, they said, had spent the night there.
NBC Bay Area reports that Idaho officials are investigating O’Connor for the same activities that she is accused of in California.
The investigator’s report also alleges a connection to the area — prosecutors wrote that O’Connor’s son invited two girls from Eagle, Idaho — 15 minutes from Star — to a party at their Los Gatos home in April.
It is not known when, exactly, O’Connor relocated to Idaho, or if the teens that were allegedly at her home when she was arrested are the same minors in the investigator’s report.
Rumors Were Circulating in Los Gatos
Parents in Los Gatos told reporters that word of O’Connor’s parties had been circulating before her arrest.
Glenn Bramer told NBC Bay Area that he had heard rumors for months, and that even children at the local middle school were aware of O’Connor’s reputation.
According to court documents, when O’Connor took a group of teens on a trip to Lake Tahoe for a party in February, the parents of one of the girls demanded that she be brought home early after being informed of O’Connor’s alleged criminal activities.
Headed to Court
Shannon O’Connor faces 39 criminal counts in California, and may face charges in Idaho depending on the findings of local authorities. She will face a judge at her arraignment after officials extradite her back to Santa Clara County, a process that is still ongoing.
O’Connor is also reportedly facing felony fraud charges in a separate case. Prosecutors said she is accused of making up $120,000 in unauthorized purchases with a company credit card when she worked as an administrative assistant at Silicon Valley-based Aruba Networks.