By Braden Schiller
Via- Wyoming News Exchange
POWELL — A 56-year-old Powell man was sentenced Wednesday to 22-25 years of prison time for sexually abusing a teenager.
Per a plea agreement, Robert Andrew McCoy’s sentence cannot be modified or appealed.
“I’m not a harsh man and I believe in forgiveness, but there are some crimes that are unforgivable — and this is one of them,” District Court Judge Bill Simpson said at a Wednesday hearing.
Due to various underlying health conditions, including heart ailments, Simpson noted that the prison term is likely a life sentence for McCoy.
He’s been held at the Park County Detention Center since his Aug. 24 arrest. In February, McCoy pleaded guilty to first-degree sexual assault of a minor. In exchange, prosecutors dropped two counts of second-degree sexual assault of a minor.
Deputy Park County Prosecuting Attorney Jack Hatfield, who represented the state, also agreed not to charge McCoy with possession of child pornography and voyeurism, related to allegations that he secretly filmed the girl.
The victim originally came forward roughly four years ago but was convinced to recant her statement by someone that Hatfield has referred to as a “confederate” of McCoy’s.
Both the victim and the mother — who remain anonymous under state statute — were present for the hearing.
The victim spoke at the hearing to stand up for herself and other girls who have been hurt, she said.
“I want my words to hurt him,” the teen said while reading her victim impact statement. “I may be physically shattered inside but I want him to hurt.”
Near the end of her letter, the victim asked that McCoy serve a life sentence without parole.
“He thought he won, but I did,” the victim said. “He made me stronger and he will never knock me down again.”
The victim’s mother said that as a result of her daughter reporting McCoy’s actions to police, they have been ostracized.
When asked if he would like to speak, McCoy said, “I have a lifetime of regret and guilt and shame over it and I’m truly sorry.”
McCoy is currently in the process of being transferred to the Wyoming State Penitentiary to serve his sentence. He’ll receive 253 days of credit that he has accumulated while being held in the detention center.
At the end of the hearing, Simpson called the victim and her mother “extraordinarily courageous.”
“I know that you will go forward in life and you will help others who may have suffered from the same type of calamity we have seen here,” Simpson said to mother and daughter. “But I want you to know that this is not your fault in any way. In any way.”