By Andrew Keller, Multimedia Journalist - bio | email
HARRISON, MI (WNEM) -
Gerald Kornexl is locked up in the Clare County Jail, accused of sexually assaulting a young girl over a two-year span. The 68-year-old allegedly did the assaulting in Harrison.
"She's 9 years old and he was doing things that shouldn't be done to anybody," said the victim's mother.
The victim's mother said she's floored by what her daughter said Kornexl did because she knew him well. We are choosing not to identify her to protect her daughter's identity.
"I would trust him with my children all the time," said the woman.
She said her daughter came to her recently and told her that Kornexl was touching her inappropriately. She took her daughter to police, where the young girl again explained to detectives what happened.
"This was a really close person to us. And for her to do that, and just to put herself out there is beyond words, because she's going through a lot and she's going to go through a lot in the future. She understands that. She wants it done," said the woman.
The sexual assault happened in a neighborhood just north of Harrison. Neighbors who live close say they're concerned there could be other victims.
"It's crazy it's happening around here. There's too many kids in the area to have something like that go on," said Lisa Dickerson, who lives down the road.
Clare County Prosecutor Michelle Ambroziatis said having the 9-year-old come forward made this a solid case.
"Actually, having a victim come forward at all to report is very important. A lot of times, these cases go underreported because victims are afraid to come forward and tell their story. They're afraid of what's going to happen, maybe nobody will believe them," said Ambroziatis.
At this point, Ambroziatis will not say if there are other victims but if there are other victims, she hopes they now feel more comfortable coming forward.
The 9-year-old victim's mother hopes sharing her daughter's story will help encourage that.
Copyright 2013 WNEM (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.
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