A teenage girl described in Schenectady County Court on Monday a world of lies constructed by the man who admitted in court to raping her.
The lies made her no longer trust her own judgment, her friends or her family, she said in a statement to the court at the sentencing of her assailant, a volunteer assistant coach of her field hockey team at Scotia-Glenville High School.
“For a long time,” her statement reads, “I felt as if nobody around me was safe. I was only able to trust the lies I was being told, which, of course, ended in his favor.
“He manipulated my feelings and internal instincts for the benefit of his own sick pleasures,” she told the court.
In return for his earlier guilty plea to one count of felony third-degree rape, 51-year-old David Kennedy was sentenced on Monday to four years in state prison and 10 years of post-release supervision. County Judge Karen Drago also ordered him to register as a sex offender when he gets out of prison.
Kennedy, of Harlau Drive, Glenville, was arrested in September 2010 and charged with having a sexual relationship with the 15-year-old girl.
The relationship began several months before the arrest and began before Kennedy was appointed to the assistant coach position, police said then.
Police said the girl’s mother suspected something and checked the girl’s phone, finding text messages from Kennedy. She then called police.
Only weeks before his arrest, Kennedy had become a volunteer assistant coach of the field hockey team. School officials noted then he had gone through a background and fingerprint check with the state Education Department, as required of all coaches.
The district said that Kennedy was never alone with team members and the allegations in the case occurred outside of the school program and off school property.
Kennedy originally was charged with two counts of third-degree rape, four counts of third-degree criminal sexual act and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
Prosecutor Christina Tremante-Pelham later noted the four years in state prison marked the maximum someone can receive on a conviction for third-degree rape, and she said the sentence was appropriate.
Kennedy was represented by attorney Kent Gebert, who could not be reached for comment after the sentencing.
Kennedy’s guilty plea came after he was deemed competent to stand trial. That determination followed an earlier ruling that found him not competent.
He has been in custody since his arrest.
Judge Drago on Monday called Kennedy “a menace.”
“She looked to you for guidance to assist her so she could attain the goals she wanted to reach,” Drago told Kennedy, then adding, “You destroyed that.”
In sentencing him to be supervised after his prison term is up, Drago said, “I do feel you need to be monitored in the community for the maximum amount of time.”
Tremante-Pelham later called the victim “a remarkable young woman who’s been through a difficult ordeal but is recovering.”
In her statement to the court, the teen said she has been working through the multiple effects of what happened and she has learned to face life’s obstacles day by day.
She noted that the impact of Kennedy’s actions went beyond herself and touched her family, friends and others, whom she called secondary victims of Kennedy.
“It hurts me to see other people than myself struggle with the aftermath of actions taken by such a cruel, selfish and manipulative individual,” the victim wrote.