Testimony begins in alleged Opelika sex abuse case

Testimony begins in alleged Opelika sex abuse case

AUBURN, AL (WTVM) - Kenneth Robinson of Opelika sat in a Lee County courtroom Thursday, March 12, and listened as two young girls recalled the night he committed sexual offenses toward them in 2012.

The victims were foster children living in the care of Robinson's mother.

Robinson was arrested on first-degree rape, sodomy and sexual abuse charges back in June of 2013 after a social worker contacted police, and the young girls picked Robinson out of a line-up as their attacker.

Friends of the victims also testified in court Thursday telling the jury how frightened one of the girls became after the incident.

The director of a group home where one of the victims lives now explained how after the victim returned from Opelika she began to act out and did not tell anyone for months what Robinson allegedly did to her.

"We see a delayed disclosure because of fear and intimidation or an anxiety the child has and so their very reluctant in the beginning of being victimized to disclose because they think they are not going to be believed," explains Rachel Mace, Director of the United Methodist Children's Home.

A detective from the Opelika Police Department assigned to the case testified Thursday.

He read the jury Robinson's initial statement which denied any wrongdoing.

Investigators have said there is no indication the foster mother knew about the alleged sexual abuse.

Opelika Police did not make Robinson's arrest public until five months later when News Leader 9 started asking questions.

Chief John McEachern says it was not the policy of the Opelika Police Department at the time to release identities of individuals who had been arrested on sex related crimes.

Since that time OPD has revised the policy saying it is still in the public's best interest to be notified of an arrest in their community.

Court will resume Friday, March 13, at 9 AM.

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