‘Ugly videos’ testimony in child abuse case
by Wes Mayer
The trial of a man indicted on four counts of child molestation and eight counts of sexual exploitation of children continued Wednesday in Coweta Superior Court and will resume today at 9:30 a.m.
Willie Autrey Gray was arrested Aug. 1, 2012, on charges of child molestation following an investigation by deputies and investigators with the Coweta County Sheriff’s Office. Gray was accused by two separate juvenile girls, both relatives of Gray, of touching them inappropriately. One of the victims also accused Gray of making her touch his privates and showing her “ugly videos” on a laptop computer — videos of pornography that included children.
Superior Court Judge Emory Palmer presided over the trial at the Coweta County Justice Center on Greenville Street. On Monday, a jury was selected by Coweta County Assistant District Attorney Kevin McMurry and Gray’s defense attorney, William D. Smith, and attorneys made their opening statements.
McMurry addressed the jury about how the two victims lived with the secret for years before finally having the courage to tell their parents how Gray molested them — after the incident, the older victim waited two years before telling her mother what happened. The younger victim also told her mother some time after this.
However, it was about another year later after more details arose, those about the child pornography and Gray forcing one victim to touch his privates, before the mother contacted authorities. Authorities later obtained a search warrant for Gray’s home and seized some of his computers, McMurry said. On one computer, videos containing child pornography were discovered.
Smith then addressed the jury about how Gray was not guilty. Gray, Smith said, was around children all his life, and raised his own and his wife’s child from other marriages. Gray was very close to the victims and their family as well, and for many years, the victims and their siblings would stay at Gray’s home. No other children ever had anything bad to say about Gray, Smith said.
As far as the child pornography found on the computer, Smith said, Gray worked as an IT professional, handling computers and working to help fix other computers with difficulties. It was during this process that the pornographic videos made it onto Gray’s personal laptop, he contended.
Both attorneys talked about the relationship problems between the victims’ parents that ultimately ended in a divorce and the impact that had on the victims. After the victims told their parents instead of the police, their parents sought therapeutic counseling, and the victims met with a counselor with Grace Harbor for some time before authorities were notified.
On Tuesday, McMurry called the two victims, the victims’ mother, the Grace Harbor counselor who met with the victims, Coweta County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Misty Angel, who first met with the victims after authorities were contacted, and Investigator Danny McDonald, who later interviewed the victims as well and obtained the search warrants.
Today, McMurry is planning on calling Sgt. Jason Fetner with the sheriff’s office as his first witness.