Former cop sentenced for child rape

MIAMI COUNTY — A Miami County judge Tuesday sentenced former West Milton police officer Kevin Wright to three consecutive terms of 10 years to life in prison for the rape of a girl under age 13.

Wright, 34, was sentenced by Judge Stacy Wall. She presided over his week-long jury trial in April. The Common Pleas Court jury found him guilty of three felony counts of rape with the specification the victim was under the age of 13.

Wright, who testified in the trial, continues to maintain his innocence. An appeal is planned, Wall was told by Wright’s new lawyer, Stephen Palmer of Columbus.

The girl also testified in the trial telling jurors how she was sexually abused by Wright numerous times over three years. She said she was afraid to tell of the abuse, fearing no one would believe her because Wright was a police officer.

A statement from the girl was read in court Tuesday by one of the prosecutor’s office’s victim advocates. The girl talked of how her whole life changed once she made a comment to a friend who told a parent of suspected abuse. School officials and police were then notified and the investigation conducted by the Miami County Sheriff’s Department.

Wright, asked if he wanted to comment before sentencing, looked at his lawyers then shook his head “no.”

Wall said she understood Wright continued to maintain his innocence but also said he showed no remorse.

She could have had the 10 years to life sentences run concurrently, or at the same time, but instead said the evidence supported the consecutive terms. Wright was classified as a Tier III sex offender. That would require him to register his address with police, once released from prison, for the rest of his life.

County Prosecutor Tony Kendell said the consecutive sentences were warranted.

“The message is: ‘We don’t care what you do for a living, what your title is, if you break the law, we are going to come for you,’” Kendell said.

Palmer, who filed a motion to act as Wright’s lawyer on appeal, asked Wall to consider setting an appeal bond. She denied that request noting several factors including the convictions on the three felonies.

Wall also said Tuesday she had denied a motion filed last week by Wright’s initial defense lawyer Jay Lopez. That motion asked for a new trial.