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Prosecution plays interviews with alleged molestation victims in teen's trial
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Public defender David Hoffer, left, speaks with Jadyn Young Tuesday, Feb. 12, 2019, in Hall County Superior Court during day one of his child molestation trial. Young is being charged as an adult, since the 16-year-old was accused of a “sex act with a child who is less than 10 years of age.” - photo by Scott Rogers

While working to finish his drawing of the planets and the Milky Way galaxy, an 8-year-old boy talked with a forensic interviewer about the alleged molestation he endured.

The jury heard several stories like that as more evidence was presented Wednesday in the trial of Jadyn Young, a 16-year-old charged with four counts of aggravated child molestation. Young is being tried as an adult in Superior Court Judge Clint Bearden’s courtroom.

The prosecution called another handful of witnesses Wednesday and played through the tapes of the forensic interviews with the alleged victims in the case, who were all under 10. The children did not appear in court.

Lisa Mallory, a forensic interviewer, slowly built a rapport during the interviews while asking the children to be honest about what they said happened.

“It sometimes takes days, weeks, months and sometimes kids never tell everything that happened,” Mallory said of the sexual assault disclosure process when questioned by Assistant District Attorney Shiv Sachdeva.

The questions eventually turned to the alleged sex acts that occurred in April 2017, and Mallory asked what the boy was thinking when it happened.

“That he needs to stop,” the boy said.

In a different forensic interview, a 6-year-old boy described an alleged sex act that happened on Feb. 14, 2018. Several times throughout the interview, the boy said he didn’t want to talk about it.

“What made it end?” Mallory asked.

“I said, ‘Stop,’” the boy said.

Mallory said she sensed no signs of deceit by the children nor any signs of coaching by a third party.

Young was charged in two separate indictments involving four separate alleged victims, and the indictments allege the sex acts occurred in April 2017 and February 2018.

During opening statements Tuesday, Assistant District Attorney Rachel Tomlinson said the children “kept this secret to themselves until they decided to take the road less traveled.”

Young’s attorneys, Matt Cavedon and David Hoffer, said there were changes in the accounts of the alleged molestation and that some of the of the victims suffer from certain developmental disabilities.

“The question is, how reliable can just a statement with no physical evidence be?” Hoffer asked after court proceedings Tuesday.

Bearden asked for the jury to return at 9:30 a.m. Thursday for the cross-examination of Mallory and further testimony.

Young faces up to life in prison if convicted.


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