The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Local News

March 9, 2013

Man sentenced for child sex abuse

BECKLEY — A 70-year-old man was sentenced to serve five to 25 years for the first degree sexual abuse of his 11-year-old granddaughter.

Donald Ray Lilly, of Beaver, will also have to register as a sex offender for the remainder of his life, as well as be placed under sex offender supervised parole if he is ever released.

Defense attorney Joseph Noggy strongly argued that his client’s inappropriate sexual behavior was caused by medication he is taking for Parkinson’s disease, which causes “hyper sexuality,” sexual hallucinations and uncontrollable sexual urges.

Noggy acknowledged that Lilly was not eligible for probation, but he asked Raleigh County Circuit Court Judge Robert A. Burnside to consider allowing Lilly to be placed on home confinement at his sister’s residence in Summers County.

He noted that Lilly’s sister does not have any minor children at her home. He also said due to Lilly’s age and medical condition, he would pose “no risk” to anyone.

He said any jail sentence would essentially be a death sentence.

Raleigh County Prosecuting Attorney Kristen Keller said the state “completely and utterly disbelieves this late claim about medication causing (Lilly) to suddenly become a child molester.”

Keller read from Lilly’s statement given to police: “I have lots of bad thoughts ... Sometimes I see a child and just want to have sex with them.”

She reviewed the details of the incident and noted that Lilly, at one point in his statement, said he had performed sexual acts on his 11-year-old granddaughter “to make her happy” because he said she was flirting with him.

In regard to Noggy’s claim that jail time would “be a death sentence,” she replied, “Tough.”

She said that the law does not give immunity to those who are older or medically challenged and he should not be immune to punishment.

“He was her grandfather. The one place a little girl should feel safe is in her grandfather’s lap when her mother was in the hospital.”

The state strongly opposed home confinement. Keller said, “Any risk is too high.”

The victim’s father spoke before the court and said since the incident, his daughter’s grades have dropped and she has been placed on medication for bed-wetting and psychotic dreams. “I don’t think he should be on the streets. It broke my heart since it happened.”

Lilly was then allowed to give a statement, most of which was either inaudible or incomprehensible.

Judge Burnside said, “This isn’t a medication issue, but a logical one.”

He respectfully rejected the option of home confinement, as he said Lilly presents a danger as a pedophile, especially since he is still taking the medication that supposedly causes his inappropriate sexual behavior.

“I find him to be a deceptive and unremorseful person unwilling to take responsibility for his actions, which enhances his danger to others.”

Burnside added, “He is a danger for as long as he is alive and here on this Earth. The children need to be protected from him.”

— E-mail: wholdren@register-herald.com

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