Molester to serve 15 years

John Wesley Davison

WOODSTOCK – The sex crimes of John Wesley Davison committed against a 10-year-old girl, the daughter of a woman he was living with at the time, brought him a sentence of 15 years in prison Friday in Shenandoah County Circuit Court.

Judge Dennis L. Hupp imposed the sentence while heaping scorn on Davison, whose acts Hupp described as “disgusting, despicable and abhorrent to me, to the community at large and, I would hope, any decent thinking person.”

Davison was convicted in May on three counts of aggravated sexual battery and taking indecent liberties with a child. The verdicts came after a two-day bench trial conducted by Hupp.

Much of the prosecution’s case rested on testimony delivered by the victim over almost 1 1/2 hours under questioning by Deputy Commonwealth’s Attorney Louis Campola and defense attorney Bradley Pollack.

The 15-year sentence exceeded the state’s guidelines for such crimes, a decision Hupp said was justified by the number of times Davison molested the girl and the long period of time during which he committed his offenses.

The girl testified at the trial about places on her body Davison touched while they were in a bedroom he shared with the girl’s mother, who was away during the incidents.

“The victim is injured emotionally,” Hupp told Davison. “You robbed her of her innocence, that precious period of life every child is entitled to.”

The victim was not in the courtroom but her elementary school teacher testified that her student suffered under the strain of being in the middle of a sex crimes investigation and confronting Davison on the witness stand.

“She visited the counselor’s office because she had a lot of anxiety going on throughout the year,” the teacher said under questioning by Campola.

The girl’s mother testified that the repeated molestations left her daughter blaming herself for Davison’s actions.

“She’s had issues with anger,” the girl’s mother said. “She’s had issues with anxiety. She’s had issues with feeling guilty.”

Campola lambasted Davison for his refusal to admit guilt or show any emotion when he testified during the trial.

“He’s not concerned about the effect of this on [the victim] at all,” Campola told Hupp.

Pollack insisted his client had been “traumatized,” by his arrest and subsequent jailing, although he hastened to add Davison had suffered less than the girl he molested.

“I don’t see how a long prison sentence on the nickel of the taxpayer is going to do anyone any good,” Pollack said in calling for leniency.

The families of Davison and the victim attended the hearing. Davison turned to his family members to thank them for supporting him but delivered no other remarks.

In comments after the hearing, Campola praised the Woodstock Police Department for the investigation that led to Davison’s arrest in early 2014.

“One of the reasons we’re able to obtain convictions in these difficult cases is because of good relationships between our office and law enforcement officers,” Campola said.