False Accusation Nightmare

By Dan…

My son was falsely accused of molesting his 19 month old daughter in September 2010. The accuser was his ex-wife, a somewhat mentally impaired individual with whom he was living. He had just landed a good job and was taking care of her and their 2 small children. He was arrested at his workplace, taken out in handcuffs. During his interrogation the investigator asked him about the other incidents of which the accuser had accused him. Being naïve he didn’t know about this interrogation technique and volunteered that maybe his ex was speaking of an incident 10 months prior when his daughter was 9 months old, in which he was caught by his ex in a compromising situation; watching an adult dvd and doing what many young men do secretly (but usually without getting caught). The baby was playing with toys in the kitchen; my son was in the living room, out of view of the kitchen. This resulted in a Second charge of Vicarious Sexual Gratification. When the ex was asked about this incident, at first she didn’t even remember it, but eventually acknowledged it.

I have since learned that she was angry that she did not have enough time for herself and her friends because my son was working long hours and was unable to watch the children. She also did not like living in their town while her friends lived in a nearby town. This had also caused arguments. The woman has since admitted that this was the root cause of this ordeal.

I do not want to go into a lot of detail about her family but I will say that it consisted of domineering middle to old aged women, with no men in the family. The younger of the family all have significant criminal records. They had dominant control over the ex (she feared them) and they very much disliked my son. She reported at one point that they even produced a large hand gun to make their point, (the Defender heard about this but seemed indifferent). This became an issue when the ex wanted to recant, but was threatened by the family. I even heard the eldest (the matriarch so to speak) of the women state, “I would be willing to drop this whole thing if (he) would give up is parental rights and sign the children over to me.” This struck me since she was not even a party to this. Not a state’s witness. How could She “drop this whole thing?” She seemed to be the one in charge.

The ex also feared the Prosecutor who was very belligerent to her threatened her with jail time if she had any thoughts about recanting.

During this time I was financially unable to retain counsel for my son. My company was in bankruptcy and I feared losing my Job at any time. My son had to go with a public defender. I will regret that (not finding a way) for the rest of my life. In the initial hearing the Defender tried to be excused from the case but was denied. It was obvious he did not want this case. The case had NO evidence, only the initial report. The child had been examined with nothing found. The Defender admitted it was a Very weak case. I thought it Very strange that the Defender did not investigate the credibility of the witness as Any kind of psychological profile would have exposed very much. We had (and still have) many exonerating text messages, Facebook entries, and other items from her that the Defender was not interested in pursuing. She even had a criminal record and my son’s record was clean. We met maybe once a month for a year, to discuss the case. It became obvious that the defender was just pursuing a plea deal, always bringing up the fact that my son was looking at 20 years in prison, just on the first charge. I found later that our Defender was a former Deputy Prosecutor for the same court, and a personal friend of the Prosecuting Attorney.

At one point I arrived at the Defender’s office, my son drove separately. He showed up with his ex, they did not have a no-contact order and he gave her rides to her job as she did not drive, (nor even did she have a license). She was attempting to recant to the Defender as she was afraid of the Prosecutor. The Defender got Very Angry and said, “This is My case, not yours. This case will be run the way I decide. Don’t Ever bring a state’s witness to my office again!” I was unaware that she was coming. It was a quick unannounced decision she made to try to peacefully bring the case to a close. She ended up sitting in the lobby while we met and discussed the case.

We continued to be offered plea deals, 10 years, 5 years, 2 years, and the last deal the defender strongly recommended accepting. “Yeah it’s a weak case but he’s a Good Prosecutor and you could end up with 28 years if you lose.” My son wished to Fight the charges. The defender said, “OK, It’s your decision. I’ll do my best, I’ll defend you the best I can.”

The ex was ordered to a sworn deposition prior to the case. I was not allowed in, just my son, the ex, the Prosecutor, and Defender. I was surprised to see the woman’s family had not shown up, and she was brought by an impartial party. During this deposition she seemed not immediately afraid, not having the feared family members there, or in the court room. She was able to speak more freely as the environment was more controlled, (according to my son). She basically recanted, under oath, that things were not as she had reported, and she did not believe that anything happened. As for the second charge, she was unable (due to her impaired mental capacity) to accurately testify, about the dimensions of the room, location of furniture, and distance from kitchen to living room. The fact that the baby was only 9 months old (and in a separate room) was never considered. After the deposition, the Prosecutor was visibly disturbed, flushed, pacing, and breathing heavily. I heard him yell to subpoena her Facebook account. I still have copies of her Facebook pages where she basically regretted the whole thing and testified that my son was a good man who never deserved this, etc. The first charge was dropped, the second stood.

On one of the final meetings with the defender prior to the court date, the Defender stated that he had just returned from Michigan City, a trip taken with the Prosecutor. He said that he was able to negotiate (during the trip) a deal. No jail time, 6 months house arrest, 1 year probation (which the Judge extended to 2 years at sentencing), lifetime on the SO registry, 2 years SO therapy and all associated court, therapy, and monitoring costs, with no chance for appeal. He strongly recommended him accepting the deal. My son wanted to fight the last charge. Just prior to the date, we had found that the ex was given an ultimatum about testimony to be given regarding the second charge and was threatened that if she didn’t comply, she would be immediately arrested as soon as she stepped down. This disturbed my son exceedingly. The final plea deal was offered to my son, and if he did not accept, the first charge would be reinstated, and if the woman did not comply with testimony for both charges, she would be immediately arrested for false reporting. The defender also produced a Supreme Court case supposedly the related the second charge, which the Prosecutor was going to use against my son. I do not remember the case name (I still have a copy here somewhere), but it concerned an Indiana Supreme Court case lost on appeal in which the defendant was caught looking into a room of sleeping children, and gratifying himself using the Children as the object. He was caught by the children’s mother. My son’s Defender said this was the case by which case would be tried. He said. “You WILL be found guilty of the second charge, and in my experience, if you are found guilty of one, you will most likely be found guilty of both. Your ex will go to Jail and you will receive at least 28 years in IDC.” My son, with tears in his eyes, accepted.

One would think there would be some sense of relief following the final hearing, it’s finally over. It was only the beginning. I will not go into detail on the Hell we endured following the sentencing. Woulda, coulda, shoulda. The guilt of not having our “Day in Court.” The bitterness, Complete lost confidence in the justice system, Law enforcement, Government, and Humanity in general. A devastating lesson in reality. The so-called Therapy sessions. My son would not successfully complete until he admitted Complete Guilt. The Polygraphs that my son passed and was criminalized because he passed. The hammer constantly held over my son’s head. It all would be unbelievable if it wasn’t Fact. I discovered Indiana RSOL, and I was appalled to find that We Were Not Alone. We should have fought to the end and appealed if we lost. Devastating lesson learned.

I was deeply concerned about Prosecutorial Misconduct and Ethics but was assured that all he was doing was Legal. It added insult to injury when 2 years after the case, the Prosecutor in the case pleaded guilty to Felony Bribery, was convicted, disbarred, disgraced and will never practice law again. It says volumes about his credibility and ethics. I was also quite disturbed at the volume of exonerating evidence that was ignored by our Public Defender because it was “His case, not ours.” Even our Defender made the comment that the Prosecutor’s responsibility is to find the truth, not to get a conviction at any cost. I have also done some research on the large number of cases throughout the country were the defendants plead guilty, and then were later exonerated. I once read an old quote from one of the great Prosecuting Attorneys from the past, “I would rather that 10 guilty go free than for 1 innocent to be convicted.” I will remember that quote the next time I am called to serve on a Jury, because I personally know of at least one innocent that has been convicted

  1. My lawyer went for plea deal immediately. I told him the girl lied. At first the situation didnt seem so bad. In court there was enough evidence to throw the case out. The the longer this went on,the more chokeing and scary it became. My lawyer did very little. In fact it seemed he did his work only when he came to court. Bottom line he and the prosecutor just wanted to get a deal and not any justice. They scare you like never before. It was one year or go to court and risk 20yrs. I took the one year and all the luggage that comes with it. I know why innocent people plea guilty now. I have hope that one day we will be free again. Keep praying

  2. Unfortunately, there are many prosecutors and defense attorneys who lack greatly in integrity. Taking on a case is a game to them, and that’s all it is to them. They really don’t care about anybody’s life, and they certainly don’t care about protecting anybody. They just like to pretend and make it look like they do. Individuals like this have no business working in these positions, but we do have them (and we have many) because they can easily get away with what they do. They’re rarely held accountable for abusing their power and abusing individuals. As long as they can keep getting away with it, they will continue to do it. Seems to happen every day.
    My 22 year old son was trapped in a sex sting operation where police posed on Craigslist as a teen volunteering free sex to adult strangers. He is very naive and very vulnerable, and there are real reasons for why he is this way (neurological issues/pre-epilepsy/developmental delays). Unfortunately none of that matters under the law. At least that’s what we were told, but it could have just been another one of the many lies we were told by people in the system, including four different defense attorneys, and a very corrupt private investigator that many attorneys here use.
    Police really played with my son’s mind to get what they wanted. He was interested in helping a naive teen who was seeking sex with random adult men on Craigslist. This teen, however, was very clearly only interested in meeting with someone if it was going to involve sex. So, he told her what she wanted to hear. He said they would “do it”. The teen confirmed right away, this is what she was looking for by finally agreeing to meet up, after he had tried to get her to come out and hang out casually (play video games, go to dinner, go to a movie). This person was very clearly only interested in meeting up for sex, and she would have only moved on to the next person.
    To make the long story short, it was very clear that they were desperate for a conviction. All truth and logic was completely disregarded by 4 different defense attorneys and a private investigator. If anything, they just worked hard at getting us to shut up about any truth that would help my son’s case. They wanted to focus on getting a reduced sentence, not on getting an innocent verdict. Only expert witnesses that they recommend would be allowed to be used, if any. Character witnesses and expert witnesses supposedly are only to be used during the sentencing phase. They cannot be used at trial to determine guilt or innocence. This is what they all told us.
    Altogether, we dealt with a great deal of manipulation, dishonesty, and abuse.
    In the end, the defense attorney handed the case over to the prosecutor on a silver platter. The prosecutor blatantly lied to jurors, telling them that they were not in the business of locking people up, yet she used a great deal of manipulation and dishonesty (twisting things) to try to get exactly that, even though they all know very well that my son is not a threat to anybody. It had been 13 months since his arrest, and he’d been completely free with no restrictions or supervision during that entire time. Now, she wanted to convince everybody that he should be put in prison and not on probation because probation would not be able to monitor him 24/7.
    I convinced the defense attorney to allow me to take the stand during sentencing. I had to pretend to believe him and trust his ill intended advice, in order to get him to put me on the stand. He only allowed me to do it because he did not want my son taking the stand, and he demanded that I follow his orders (only stick to what he wanted and do not bring up anything about how my son is different, any of his medical issues, etc). I pretended to agree, knowing the prosecutor was going to try to tear me apart, and I had a lot to say about anything she could ask. I certainly frustrated her and our defense attorney was furious with me for bringing up everything, including saying that no one would use the entrapment defense and no one could provide an explanation for it. I also brought up the dishonesty we had dealt with and catching the private investigator in a huge lie. Our own attorney kept objecting to my responses to the prosecutor’s questions. Then he’d walk over and whisper to her. It couldn’t be more obvious than that!
    During the break, he yelled at me and told me I had ruined everything. He claimed that he would have to do damage control.
    It was obvious the judge was interested in what I had to say. In the end, he changed the 10 year probation sentence, that the jurors gave, to a five year probation sentence. He ended up adding 14 days in county jail, to keep Satan (I mean the prosecutor) happy. And he is not making my son move from his residence, even though he lives directly behind a children’s park, because he knows very well that my son is not the child predator these people so desperately wanted him to be. Although, he is still going to be labeled as one, for 15 years.
    We’ll continue to stand up and speak the whole truth about this. We’ll continue fighting. They need to be exposed for who they truly are and what they do. I strongly suspect there is so much more to this. I really think they conduct these sex sting operations to cover up actual human trafficking and protect the real predators. They do this to make it look like they are addressing the human trafficking problem, when in reality they are not. We never hear about any human trafficking victims rescued.
    It would also be very rare for real teens to go onto adult sites, volunteer free sex to adult strangers, and give their real (minor) age. It just doesn’t happen. There is no real reason for why they should look for “child predators” on adult sites, other than they can find easy targets (vulnerable individuals) to fall into their trap.
    We know for sure there is corruption going on. I just want to know what all they are covering up. There are way too many red flags in all of this. It needs to be investigated.

    1. I take offense to your comment about the real predators. I had a non contact crime but I knew my victim, it wasnt a potential stranger. I am sorry your son got caught up but I doubt this was his first time talking to an underage girl. Maybe the first time he got caught.

      Stings are wrong but they continue to do them because people keep entertaining them. Your sons decision feeds the stranger danger narrative. He only talked about sex bc she asked him too… really?

      1. I’m glad you weren’t on the jury of this young man. On what facts did you decided “I doubt this was his first time talking to an underage girl You sound jaded. You sound jaded.

      2. FAIRLAWS:
        Not the first time talking to a minor?
        Like he said, he talked to minors when he was a minor himself.
        He plays video games and has online friends. His online friends have always been older than him. If he were interested in talking to minors, he would be doing that through the video gaming chats. Doesn’t that make more sense than “going on to an adult site to find or talk to a minor”? Isn’t that what a real predator would do? By real predator, I mean someone who is purposefully looking for minors to hook up with. He did not do that, nor has he ever.
        Wouldn’t there be proof of that or easy to catch or find out about if he had done that, especially after getting caught in this trap? He still plays video games and chats with people online. Wouldn’t law enforcement be keeping a close eye on that, if they really believed that he is a child predator? (And they pretended like they did believe this about him) It’s been over a year since his arrest. He’s continued playing video games and chatting with online friends since then. 🤷🏻‍♀️
        Sex sting operations where police pose as minors who are volunteering free sex to adult strangers on adult sites trap innocent individuals because they are caught off guard to find something like this on an adult site. It’s something that just doesn’t happen. So, you can’t expect individuals to have a normal response to something that is just not normal. It’s not a normal thing for young teens to be pushing free sex on random adult strangers they find on adult sites. It’s not a valid way of catching true child predators, because there are many reasons why someone may have a NOT normal response (or what appears to be not normal) to a situation that is just not normal. Why is it so hard to believe that there are individuals who would want to help someone who is doing something so dangerous like this?

  3. I feel your pain. My son went through a similar case, although I spent a lot of money on a lawyer, but ended up taking a plea for the same reason anyway. This involved a much older woman though. No children involved, but she seemed willing to try to help after the fact. we know her very well and had for a long time. In the end I know the prosecutor told her she would be prosecuted herself for recanting. Of course, she changed her mind and my son was 21 at the time and now on his second year of probation, spending tons of money going to required sex therapy, as they call it and is a Registered sex offender. Yes we know exactly where you are coming from. This happened in NC. My son is 25 now and doing the best he can under the circumstances. He has not let it ruin his life but he sure could have had a much better one if she would have admitted her part in the whole situation. She was 51 and he was 21. Cougar getting caught by her children is all that was and now my son pays the price for life.

  4. Thanks for posting your story. There needs to be a serious study of the plea deals and flimsy stories.

    In my case, my defense attorney was from my parents’ county and the case was in another county. My case was rushed, it seemed. I don’t remember waiving my right to speedy. Before a year was up, I was being forced into a decision: plea deal of probation or trial. (There was no nudity, no DNA evidence.) The kicker was that a month after my plea deal, my own “defense” attorney ran for DA in the state’s primary and won, later winning the general election.

    How bad would it have hurt his chances at winning an election if it was discovered that one of his clients was an “SO” whose case got dropped? How hard would he have tried to win that case?

    There were some interesting issues that could have caused serious doubt for the jury: the girl’s past behavior, her absent father’s past behavior, her mother’s behavior (my shrink, a PhD/LPC and devout Christian, told me she was likely a sociopath), and what about the possibility of the questioning by the doctors and the police and the prosecutors all being more traumatic than the original event? Just let it drop!

    Yeah, I was wrong, a bit, but my shrink pointed out the girl and the mother shared responsibility for what happened. But the law keeps wearing its blinders about ALL of the pertinent details, as in your son’s case.

  5. I have alot of sympathy for your sistiation the registry ruins many lifes after the fact. People make accusations and many innocent people suffer including loved ones and friends.

  6. I know the feeling I was framed by a judge and prosecutor because of a threat by the prosecutor and judge at the time attorney to my ex to make me pay what ever it took for a involvement in a separate case that they believed I was involved but had no evidence . They used an old exposure charge for mooning someone in the 80’s to show prior conduct and was convicted without any evidence and now am registered and shamed by family and others for something that never happened.

  7. I am so sorry for what you and your son have gone through. Unfortunately , this treatment from our court system is very common if a person does not have money to fight for justice. Thank God for the few who are fighting for true justice and helpful change.

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