The Franklin News-Post|
P. O. Box 250
310 Main Street, SW
Rocky Mount, Virginia 24151
Friday, September 28, 2012
By KEN BRADLEY - Staff Writer
A Rocky Mount man was found not guilty Wednesday in Franklin County Circuit Court of sexually molesting a child under the age of 18.
Calvin Fitz-El, 65, was cleared of three charges of sodomy of a mentally incapacitated minor and three charges of aggravated sexual battery of a minor.
The sex abuse accusations were made by a boy who testified that he was molested up to 40 times, starting when he was in the sixth grade.
Under cross-examination by Fitz-El's attorney Will Davis, the alleged victim said he sometimes hallucinates, and has memory and anger issues.
Responding to questions by Davis, the alleged victim, who is now 18, said he once saw a man with a dog, but the man didn't really have a dog.
The alleged victim said that sometimes he isn't sure whether something really happens or if he imagines it.
"When I get upset, I don't remember things," he said.
Stephanie Hodges, an RN at Carilion Franklin Memorial Hospital, testified that she conducted a physical examination on the alleged victim on Sept. 8, 2011, two days after he said he was sexually molested the last time. She said there was no physical evidence and no DNA found during the examination to indicate the alleged victim had been molested. Hodges also said the alleged victim told her he hadn't had a bath since the alleged Sept. 6 incident.
The alleged victim's mother testified that her son has had memory issues since the first grade and has anger problems. She said her son made abuse allegations against her in 2010 that were unfounded.
She said that her son told her he made the allegations against Fitz-El "because he was mad a me. He later said he had lied."
Dave Stewart, a licensed private counselor, testified that he is counseling the alleged victim, who has "fantastic stories."
Stewart said the alleged victim has told him he sees rainbow colors, hears voices and is unsure whether some things actually happened.
"At one of our last meetings, he did say it (the sex abuse) may not have happened," Stewart said.
During his testimony, Fitz-El said, "I never had sex with him and I deny the allegations."
Fitz-El said he had not been alone with the alleged victim since 2010 when he made abuse allegations against his mother.
Circuit Court Judge W.N. Alexander II said the evidence in the case was filled with inconsistencies.
"I'm very disappointed with the outcome, but not surprised," said Assistant Commowealth's Attorney Robert Deatherage. "These cases are very difficult to prove beyond a reasonable doubt, especially when a parent doesn't support the victim."