Scott Alan Cook was sentenced to prison for sexually assaulting a child last year.
Cook was arrested in 2016 on suspicion of having sexual contact with a three-year-old child.
The girl disclosed the abuse to her mother, including a description of a sex toy Cook used.
When the disclosure took place, the victim’s mother ordered Cook to leave their home.
When the victim was told Cook was out of the home, she said she thought Cook was out buying another sex toy.
Following a one week trial and a day and a half of jury deliberation, Cook was convicted of felony sexual assault.
Cook maintained his innocence during the trial as well as during sentencing.
“I can’t believe I’m accused and convicted of this,” Cook said during his sentencing hearing. “I would lay down my life for any child.”
“I still don’t understand how a guilty verdict was reached. Many people know I am not guilty,” said Cook.
A relative of the victim provided the court with a few brief remarks at the hearing, addressed to Cook.
“I pray you set some kind of sentence,” the family member said. “When you walk out of this courtroom you are dead to me.”
Judge Mike McMahon sentenced Cook to 60 years in the state prison and ordered him to register as a Tier-1 sex offender.
McMahon told Cook he handed down the sentence in the best interest of the community and for the safety of the young victim in the case.
The sentence means the victim in the case will be 18 years old by the time Cook is eligible for parole.
MANCHESTER — A city man faces charges that he subjected a grade school aged girl to two years of ongoing sexual assault after the victim disclosed the abuse to a city school counselor, police said.
Alexander Mathieu, 25, was arrested, five days after Detective Stephen Flynn began investigating, according to a police statement.
The girl is 8 years old, police said.
She reported the abuse to a counselor, who turned over the information to authorities.
The police juvenile unit launched an investigation on Nov. 14.
That day, police placed the victim with a family member and interviewed her at the Child Advocacy Center about the assaults.
Mathieu is the girl's mother's boyfriend. The girl had been living with her mother and Mathieu for at least seven years, police said.
The girl remains in the temporary custody of an unnamed family member.
Mathieu was ordered held on $20,000 cash or surety bail.
A Stone County man was recently found guilty of sexually abusing young girls.
Gary Pickron, 73, was found guilty of first degree statutory sodomy, child molestation, and sexual misconduct with a child, according to Stone County Prosecutor Matt Selby. After a three-day trial, a jury deliberated for about two hours before reaching the verdict, Selby said. He was found guilty on seven counts.
Charges were originally filed in early 2015 after two young girls, ages 4 and 5, disclosed to a relative that the defendant had touched them on their genitals with his hands and mouth after visiting at his house in Reeds Spring over Christmas break.
The incidents were reported to the Stone County Sheriff’s Office and interviewed by investigators. The videos of the interviews were later played at trial. After charges were filed, additional victims came forward and disclosed that they had been sexually abused by the defendant going back as far as 1995.
These incidents also involved young girls visiting at the Pickron’s home in Reeds Spring. Additional charges were filed.
“This was an important case because we presented evidence that this defendant has had some type of sexual contact with at least eight young children over more than 20 years,” said Selby said in a press release “It was time for it to stop and to stop for good.”
Selby also highlighted the importance of “propensity” evidence and of the Child Advocacy Center. Selby said that in “2014 Missouri citizens passed a constitutional amendment giving the judge in a child sex abuse case the authority to allow evidence that the defendant has sexually abused children before. At that time, we were the only state in the union that didn’t allow that type of evidence. In this case we were able to present evidence from three witnesses that the defendant committed similar acts against them as what he did to the four and five year old victims in this case. That evidence was used to corroborate the testimony of the girls and show that the defendant had a ‘propensity’ to do those types of things.”
Selby stated that if a person hears about a case and knows of others who may have been abused or harmed by Pickron, to contact his office with the information. Selby said it was also important to have a trained and experienced forensic interviewer at the Child Advocacy Center, a child-friendly facility where children can talk about embarrassing and frightening things that have happened to them.
Pickron is scheduled for sentencing Jan. 2, 2018, with Circuit Judge Jack Goodman. He is facing up to life imprisonment.