Perry sentenced to 60 years on child sex charges

by Alex McRae

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Matthew James Barrian Perry

Matthew James Barrian Perry will spend the next 60 years in prison after being found guilty by a Coweta Superior Court jury on 25 of 26 felony charges, including child molestation, aggravated child molestation, aggravated sexual battery, sexual exploitation of children and invasion of privacy.

Perry was found not guilty on one count of aggravated sexual battery.

Following announcement of the verdict, Perry, 30, was sentenced to a total of 60 years to serve in prison by Coweta Superior Court Judge Quillian Baldwin. Perry will spend the remainder of his life on probation and must register as a sex offender.

Coweta Judicial Circuit Assistant District Attorney Ray Mayer prosecuted the case, and testimony was heard this week at the Coweta County Justice Center in Newnan. Following the verdict Mayer said, "We are grateful to the jury for such all their hard work and for the verdict. We are pleased with the sentence."

During the trial jurors heard testimony from Perry's victims, two young female relatives now aged 16 and 18. They testified that over several years in three separate residences in Coweta and Meriwether counties Perry had fondled them, forced them to perform sex acts on him and took photos of them either naked or partially clothed.

Some of the photos presented in evidence were taken with a hidden smartphone camera Perry had set up in a bathroom. Those photos showed the girls in the shower. The lewd photos presented in evidence were proved to have been taken on a smartphone owned by Perry that was discovered hidden under a mattress after the investigation of the charges began in May 2012.

Both victims said the molestation had gone on for several years. The youngest victim said she could not remember being photographed when some of the lewd photos were taken. She said some of the photos were taken when she was intoxicated and that Perry often furnished her with alcohol, sometimes in exchange for performing sex acts on him.

Perry testified on his own behalf and contended that he had never molested the girls or taken the pictures of the girls presented in evidence. He testified that the photos on the smartphone could have been taken by any of several people, including the young victims or one of their boyfriends. Perry said this was possible because the smartphone was his only way of connecting to the internet from his rural home in Coweta and that several people had access to the phone.

Perry also said he did not make all the searches of internet porn sites discovered in the phone's data base. He also said that when informed he had failed a voluntary polygraph test on May 17, 2012, he questioned the results with the polygraph examiner.

Perry said he was an expert at reading graphs and by watching the polygraph data while the test was being performed he saw no indication that his response was deceptive. The polygraph examiner testified and stood by his report saying they Perry's answer was deceptive when asked if he had touched one of the girls' breasts through her dress.

The investigation began on May 14, 2012, when the victims' mother contacted Coweta County Sheriff's Investigator Elaine Jordan and reported that one of her daughters claimed she had been molested by Perry.

Jordan began investigating and on May 17, 2012, Perry was arrested and subsequently released on $35,000 bond.

During the ensuing investigation, Perry's cell phone was seized and forensically searched. Investigators discovered hundreds of images of pornography, internet web searches and links to pornographic web sites, including some featuring young females.

Based on the new evidence, additional charges were filed against Perry in June 2012.



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