Repression of Child Sexual Abuse Corroborated Independently By Three Victims

This case is over ten years old, but the way these two woman remembered their abuse, and the fact that they were not in contact during their recall is interesting….

“A 68-year-old Springfield man, who admitted sexually assaulting three young girls in his home in 1964, was sentenced yesterday to four years in prison and ordered to pay two of his victims $ 20,000 toward their psychotherapy bills.

The prosecution of James A. Rogers, of the 6300 block of Pioneer Drive, was the oldest case ever brought in Fairfax County. Rogers was arrested in October and pleaded guilty in March, and the case seemed on its way to a routine conclusion.

But when two of the victims — former neighbors of Rogers now in their forties — demanded that Rogers pay more than $ 178,000 in restitution for the therapy and medical bills they accrued in recent years, Circuit Court Judge Robert W. Wooldridge faced a dilemma: how to penalize a sex offender financially, especially for damages inflicted nearly 40 years ago. Prosecutors often seek restitution from defendants in cases of theft or property damage, and sometimes do so in violent crimes. Fairfax prosecutors said they had obtained court orders forcing sex offenders to pay for therapy for rape or molestation victims. But since no one had ever tried a 37-year-old case in the county, there was no precedent for Wooldridge’s ruling.

Rogers’s attorney, Thomas Woehrle, argued that restitution wasn’t appropriate in a criminal case and was better left to a civil lawsuit. Wooldridge disagreed but allowed Woehrle to subpoena the victims’ detailed medical and psychological records. When the women took the witness stand to detail the lasting effects of the childhood sexual assaults, Woehrle cross-examined them at length about the other traumas they had suffered in their adult lives.

In the late 1990s, both women were depressed and in counseling. One, who is 43, said she was at her sister’s house in 1998, and “something just clicked. It made me look his name up in the phone book. I don’t know why. He was still there. And I started remembering.”

The other woman, who is 45, said she received electroshock therapy in 1999, and “it triggered something in my mind. I started to have memories of very horrific abuse.” Both women denied that therapists suggested the abuse to them. They have said previously that when they approached another old friend from the neighborhood, the friend told them she had never forgotten what occurred in Rogers’s home. That friend became the third accuser in the case.

The first two women went to Fairfax police in 1999 and agreed to wear hidden transmitters and visit Rogers, a retired mail carrier. Twice they confronted him after not seeing him for decades. According to the transcripts, he admitted to some molestations. But he adamantly denied the women’s most serious allegations, both on tape and to a Fairfax detective, and prosecutors did not charge him with rape or sodomy.

One of the women told Wooldridge, “I have been essentially imprisoned for life due to Mr. Rogers’s abuse, and I believe Mr. Rogers should share that imprisonment.”

Rogers told the judge, “I truly, truly am sorry for the tragic situation that’s happened to these girls. I’ll have this on my mind the rest of my life.”


Man Gets Prison for ’64 Sex Assaults; Fairfax Defendant Also Ordered to Pay $20,000 Toward Victims’ Future Therapy, Tom Jackman, Washington Post, Metro

Man Accused of ’60s Child Abuse; Three Girls Allegedly Were Molested; Case May Be Oldest Ever in Fairfax, Tom Jackman, Washington Post, Metro

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8 Responses to Repression of Child Sexual Abuse Corroborated Independently By Three Victims

  1. little nel says:

    Hi Sue,

    My heart goes out to you.

    Your brother sounds like someone who is violent. Keep yourself safe from more harm. Don’t expect him to validate you or show remorse. He will most likely try to keep you silent.

    When Marilyn Van Derbur confronted her father about the sexual abuse he immediately went out of the room and returned with a gun.
    He implied that he would kill them both if she spoke about the abuse anymore. His intention was to keep her silent with the threat of death.

    Many of us have never had the chance to confront our abusers in person as it was not safe to do so, or they had died, or they were unavailable.

    Most abusers will not admit to the abuse until they are in custody.

    • SurvivorSunshine says:

      I agree with you, Little Nel. I’ve never had the desire to confront my father over his abuse, probably because he’s proved he is capable of murder already and is serving LWOP. I think some people want to confront the abuser for an apology or an explanation. In my mind, there is not an apology or explanation that would ever take away the fact that the perpetrator chose to sexually abuse an innocent child. Anyone who sexually abuses a child will NEVER be a safe person.

      Joyce Meyer chose to forgive her dad and he publicly repented for abusing her. However, I wonder if he would have repented if she hadn’t been a famous evangelist and had the power to ruin his reputation and press charges if he chose to deny it like so many others? I may just be skeptical but I do believe her fame and wealth humbled him to a confession. Most of us will not have that opportunity with our abusers.

      • little nel says:

        I agree, Sunshine.

        How do we know for sure that Joyce Meyers was the one who humbled her father into confessing?

        Bodyguards may have been involved in her ability to confront him.

        It took bodyguards to keep my abusive brother at bay, when the protective orders and jail time failed to subdue his violence. He more dangerous to me when he got out of jail.

      • Alethea says:

        Hi Sunshine 🙂

        I always caution people to never “confront,” write a letter, or call the abuser if it is to get an apology or an explanation. When people speak about their abuse to the abuser, it needs to be without any expectations of anything, and to be prepared for total denial.

  2. Sue Morel says:

    Unfortunately, Massachusetts has a statute of limitations and I cannot do anything about my brother repeatedly raping me and almost killing me when I was 14 and he was 19. I have just finished writing an 85 page autobiography. I always remembered the oral sex part, but through prolonged exposure therapy, I found out the truth and it all fit in and made sense. Do you have any comments that may help me out? I have never confronted him about this.

    • Alethea says:

      Sue, some people write a letter to their abusers and then burn it. Some send it. If you feel strong enough to handle his denial, and any ostracizing or personal attacks from family members who don’t believe you, I would send it. But I would send it after you spend time editing it to perfection. Blasting someone with rage isn’t healing, but speaking the truth to them for the sake of not wanting to live the lie anymore, and to let them know that what they did was not okay…can be liberating to do.

      If you write him a letter, pour out all the rage at first, then you can edit that stuff out. But know that the vast majority of people NEVER admit to it.

      Marilyn’s father admitted to it privately to Marilyn, but denied it publicly and joined the False Memory Syndrome Foundation.

      But some abusers are still dangerous people. I don’t know what kind of person your brother is, but if you feel safe, a letter to him could bring you some feelings of release. Silence is complicity, but speaking the truth brings consequences. You have to weigh it all out before making that very important, major decision.

      It was the best thing I ever did, and in spite of the hell my family put me through, I would do it again in a minute.

      • Sue Morel says:

        My mother was also a beater, but she loved my brother. She’s in a nursing home with Alzheimers now. I have just finished writing an 85 page autobiography.. I hadn’t thought about my brother getting violent, but that’s typical, isn’t it? What I mean is that the victim still doesn’t face the whole truth sometimes. And yes, my brother does own a lot of guns. I’m not worried about any family members because my Dad is dead and there are no other siblings. I really just want my brother exposed for what he is. Also I wonder if he is still indulging in young girls. He never did get married or live with a woman until about 2 years ago when my mother went into a nursing home.

        I work as a visiting nurse and have additional college. I want to do what I can to help others. I am going to sit on a panel for the VA in June to discuss the Prolonged Exposure Program. Thanks so much.
        Again, thanks so much. I hadn’t really thought about my brother possibly getting violent to me again. Sue

  3. little nel says:

    Three adult women who were severely abused by a government employee as children and he was not charged with rape or sodomy.

    This man was never held accountable for his crimes because everyone knows that government employees would never rape, or sodomize, or abuse a child.

    Yeah, right.

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