Rochester, N.Y. --- Monroe County Court Judge James Piampiano pointed at Ronell McFadden and called him “the face of evil” before sentencing him to sixty years in prison Thursday afternoon.
Moments earlier the woman he attacked stared down that face of evil and told the court that, “for six years he got to be free and do as he pleased while I felt like prisoner in my own body.”
In May 2006 McFadden, 35, broke into this woman’s Ambrose Street home and raped her at knifepoint. He threatened her life and the life of her baby who slept nearby.
“She didn’t fight back because of that child,” Assistant District Attorney Sara VanStrydonck told the court during sentencing.
Despite the outcome, questions about the path this case traveled still remain. In September 2006 DNA linked McFadden to the crime and yet the victim tells 13WHAM News in an exclusive interview after sentencing that, “I didn’t hear anything about the case until March 2011.”
In court it was learned that during this attack McFadden actually told the victim a lie to perhaps intentionally throw her and investigators off course. That led to the arrest of an innocent man, someone the victim knew for years, who spent months in jail before DNA cleared him and named McFadden the suspect.
"I felt pressured because of things that he (McFadden) said,” the victim explained. “Who it was who it could be and you know I did, I feel bad because at one point this man that I put in jail for it used to be my friend."
DNA cleared that man and released him from jail in September 2006.
Days later the Rochester Police Department and Monroe County District Attorney’s Office received a letter about a CODIS (DNA) match to “known offender” Ronell McFadden.
"I didn't hear anything about the case until March 2011,” the victim said about when she learned this news.