Think Out Loud recently visted the Hillcrest Youth Correctional Facility and, on another recent show, we spoke with a convicted child molester to better understand the criminal rehabilitation process. Both shows examined this issue from the perpetrator’s perspective. But of course, there’s another side to this: how crime victims view rehabilitation.
Colleen Kelly was sexually assaulted by the serial rapist Richard Troy Gillmore in 1980 when she was 13 years old. She says the event permanently changed her physical and emotional life and a back injury from the assault prevented her from pursuing a passion for gymnastics. She does not believe Gillmore should be released from prison and she testified at his most recent parole hearing earlier this week.
In keeping with past hearings, Gillmore was denied parole. He has been in prison for more than two decades. When the then-20-year-old Kelly appeared at Gillmore’s 1987 sentencing hearing, she stated that she could forgive him for the crime, but she could never forget it. She continues to oppose his release from prison.
Have you been the victim of a crime? Were you able to forgive the perpetrator? How do you view rehabilitation? What longer term effects have you had to deal with?
- Colleen Kelly: Sexual assault survivor and victims’ advocate
- Marlena Mish: Executive director of Children’s Advocacy Center of Jackson County