Jury: Man guilty of sex abuse
Scofield not guilty of rape I, sodomy I
A nine-woman, three-man jury found an Opp man guilty of sexually abusing two female relatives when they were children on Thursday.
The case was initiated in 2013 when the younger victim disclosed to a family friend that Jerry Wayne Scofield had molested her over a five-year period, ending when she was 10 years old.
A joint investigation was conducted by the Covington County Sheriff’s Office and the Covington County Department of Human Resources.
During the course of the investigation, the second, and older, victim, revealed that Scofield had molested her at a young age as well.
Chief Assistant District Attorney Grace Jeter had both victims take the stand and corroborated their stories.
According to testimony, Scofield admitted to the sexual abuse.
Court documents show that Former Covington County Sheriff’s investigator Teddie Rae Motley noted that Scofield’s attitude about the abuse was “nonchalant,” adding, “It was as if he thought there was nothing wrong with touching these two little girls’ private parts.”
The state was represented these two little girls’ private parts.
The jury convicted Scofield of sexual abuse of a child under 12 and sexual abuse I.
They also acquitted him of a rape I and sodomy I charges.
“Those two offenses are essentially the same crime,” Jeter said.
The name of the charge has changed as well as the range of punishment.
“Being sexually abused forever scars a child, and while a child who has been abused can heal and survive, it is not an easy process,” Jeter said. “Children don’t simply forget or get over abuse, and instances of delayed disclosure such as these are far too common. These brave women will remain in the prayers of all of us at the District Attorney’s office.”
Circuit Judge Lex Short presided over the trial and a sentencing hearing is set for Aug. 16.
Scofield faces maximum sentences of 10 years in prison for sexual abuse I and 20 years in prison for sexual of child under 12.
Upon his release from incarceration, he will be required to comply with the requirements of sex offender notification and registration act.