Our client was falsely accused of molesting his daughter and was being prosecuted in Cobb County Superior Court. Unfortunately, we weren’t retained until after the client had been arrested and the case was indicted.
The allegation was made immediately following a visitation weekend. Our client and his ex-wife had gone through a bitter divorce and were constantly arguing over child support and other parenting issues. Emails between the two of them showed that there was steady conflict over issues such as visitation, parenting style, turning the kids against the other, and numerous instances where communication was quite volatile.
In these communications, we noticed patterns where the mother was extremely controlling over the kids and our client and took clear steps to turn the kids against their dad. She would question the kids after every visitation weekend with our client and then accuse him of endangering the kids or neglecting them.
In reviewing the evidence, it became clear that the daughter had been subjected to repeated coaching by her mother. The mother had the child write out statements about the alleged molestation and even draw pictures about it. These statements and drawings seemed to be heavily influenced by the mother. While the evidence of coaching was helpful for us, one troubling piece of evidence was a report from a nurse that the daughter had injuries to her labia that were consistent with sexual abuse.
After obtaining the nurse’s training and employment records, we learned that she had very little experience in conducting sexual assault exams. We also learned that the daughter had eczema which could cause vaginal irritation. A careful examination of the records from the sexual assault exam showed that the only “injuries” were really just micro-abrasions that could easily have been from the child’s eczema condition.
Interestingly, following the sexual assault exam and the nurse’s reporting of this “injury,” the mother claimed that the daughter was now experiencing significant pain in her vaginal area. This was inconsistent with the daughter’s initial interview were she claimed to have no injuries and no pain whatsoever.
In the days following the exam, the mother turned in a drawing that was allegedly prepared by the daughter. This drawing closely resembled the diagram contained in the nurse’s report. The drawing indicated the “injury” reported by the nurse and noted that this is where it “herts the most.” It was later learned that the mother had obtained a copy of the nurse’s report prior to this drawing being made.
The mother also falsely accused our client of stalking her. She told the detective that after the allegation was made, he showed up at her house in a pickup truck and gave her “the look of death.” She even claimed there was a neighbor who witnessed this. We obtained flight and hotel records that conclusively proved that our client was in Canada during this time period.
Eventually, we met with the prosecutors and turned over all of the emails, divorce records and statements from witnesses that we obtained which established the long history of the mother’s hostility towards our client. We were also able to pick apart the State’s evidence and highlight the strong indications that the daughter’s statements were the product of coaching.
In the end, we successfully proved our client’s innocence and the charges against him were dismissed. The arrest was expunged from his record and he can now begin the process of repairing his relationship with his children.