LAS VEGAS (KSNV MyNews3.com) -- A serial pedophile is finally brought to justice. It not only required the courage of his victims but a combination of law enforcement agencies.
“My uncle Rich decided to take us on a camping trip. My sister went first, I went second, and he ended up sexually assaulting both of us,” one of the victims said.
The girls were in the eighth grade at the time. Scared and confused, neither one discussed the incidents with the other, but there were signs something was wrong.
“We just came home, kept living our lives, started going to school and I started feeling kind of depressed; a little anxious all the time,” a victim said. “I started cutting and was suicidal.”
Eventually the girls confided in each other and friends about what happened. Their friends encouraged them to report the crime.
“I said that isn’t going to happen. This is my mother’s brother; it will tear the whole family apart. I don’t want to say anything,” a victim said.
After 10 years of trying to hide what happened, the truth came out.
“I had opened up to one of my best friends. Well, because his father is a deacon he is a mandated reporter, so he called it in,” she said.
The girls – finally – also told their mother.
“My mom went to counseling a lot because she felt guilty,” a victim said. “It wasn’t her fault – it wasn’t my fault – it was his fault. He is the one who made the wrong decision; he is the one who did everything wrong.”
“The accusations were horrific and they had been dealing with this particular crime for nearly 10 years – terrorized throughout,” said U.S. Postal Inspector Bernie Feeney.
Postal inspectors got involved after local police asked for some specialized help.
“They had a vast amount of digital evidence they needed assistance with,” Feeney said.
Analysis of the suspect’s computer revealed more victims. Inspectors sent the images to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children for help in identifying victims.
Both girls say they are now moving forward.
“Once the ball started rolling I realized I think I’m going to get justice for this and I’m going to be able to put this behind me," she said.
The girls’ uncle pleaded guilty and was sentenced to 20 years in prison. Both victims are now in college say they want to help others who have been assaulted.