Prosecuting Years Later - KFDA - NewsChannel 10 / Amarillo News, Weather, Sports

Prosecuting Years Later

Ryan Cody
NewsChannel 10

Amarillo, TX - An Amarillo couple is behind bars tonight on charges of sexual assault of a child which occurred several years ago.

Getting witnesses to accurately testify on evidence from years ago is no easy task. But experts say, in cases involving the sexual assault of a minor, there is no forgetting.

After Randall County District Attorney James Farren was presented the evidence from a 21 year old woman who claims she was sexually assaulted as a teenager, he tells us he knew he had a strong case.

"We believe the evidence justifies the charges and we believe we can prove this case beyond a reasonable doubt."

Which says a lot because the evidence against 56 year old Teddy Gene Acklin and 40 year old Angela Marie Oakes is all at least three years old.

"The more time that is passes between the crime and the report of the crime. The more difficult it is to prove the case," Farren says.

Shelly Bohannon see's cases like this all the time at The Bridge in Amarillo. She says it would be out of the ordinary for a minor to come forward with accusations anytime close to when the crime occurred.

"They have a hard time talking about it because there may be a threat from the person who has hurt them. "Whether it's a verbal threat or an implied threat because of their stature and size difference," Bohannon says.

Which could be the hardest part of this case for Farren and the rest of the prosecution.

Because there is no statute of limitations anymore for abuse cases involving children, Farren says he is confident justice will be served.

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