Speaking Out: One woman’s message for victims after controversial plea deal

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UNION COUNTY, Ky. (WEHT) — Roger Dailey was indicted in August 2018 for rape and sexual abuse of a child under twelve, after the alleged victim reported her abuse, which she says happened in the 1980’s.

Dailey was 30 at the time.

A trial got underway, but a verdict was never reached.

“My victim’s advocate was actually subpoenaed by the defense, as well as my husband,” Michelle Alvey remembers. “The only two support people I had with me, and from that I had a severe panic attack. And it pulled the rug out from under me.”

The defense asked for a mistrial, and they got it. There was a new trial date set for January this year; and then, a change.

“The Commonwealth contacted me and said they wanted to offer Roger this plea agreement.”

There would be a guilty plea, but not for rape or sexual abuse. Dailey plead guilty to wanton endangerment.

That charge meant no jail time, and no registry as a sex offender. He will serve five years probation.

“I feel like I was failed by the system when I was a child and reported, and I feel like I was failed again today,” Alvey said after the sentencing.

Advocates say victims often come forward to protect others.

“They want to protect children from someone in a position of authority,” said New Beginnings Advocacy Coordinator Terri Crowe.

For Michelle Alvey, that person in authority was a bus driver in Gibson County.

“It was my stepfather, and she said ‘Oh my God, he’s driving a school bus for children!”

Now Dailey cannot work with children again.

“Ultimately I feel like there was some light brought towards this situation which is a positive.”

“The way our judicial system is set up is often at odds with what the victim needs,” said Crowe. She says the county has fantastic prosecutors, but they are there to serve the public’s best interest, not necessarily the victim’s.

That, according to the Commonwealth Attorney in Union County, is what happened here.

In a statement — “…Though our office continues to believe the statements of the crime victim, the public interest is better served by resolving the case prior to trial because of new developments.”

You can see that full statement below.

Michelle Alvey says her abuser is free, but so is she.

“I want perpetrators to know, as children, we’re meek and we’re quiet and we’re trained and groomed to keep secrets. But we grow up, and we become empowered.”

She also says she recommends Darkness to Light as a resource for parents and adults looking to prevent abuse.

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(This story was originally published on January 17, 2020)

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