A man who sexually abused a girl from the time she was eight years old has been sentenced to 35 years in prison. Joshua Michael Lay, 38, of Platte City, received the sentence in Platte County on October 17 after pleading guilty to statutory sodomy in the first degree in May.
Platte County Prosecuting Attorney Eric Zahnd said, "This defendant repeatedly raped and sodomized a girl for years, beginning when she was only eight years old. He slapped her when she didn't perform a sexual act to his liking. His evil acts demanded a lengthy prison term in response."
In April 2017, a girl disclosed to staff members at Children's Mercy Hospital that Lay had sexually abused her, beginning sometime around 2010. The girl later told a child forensic interviewer that Lay had abused her multiple times from the time she was eight until she reported the crimes at age 15.
Lay denied the girl's allegations to investigators but later pleaded guilty, admitting his acts against the girl.
Lay admitted that, in one incident, he slapped the girl across her face when she attempted to pull away from a sex act. Lay told her not to do that again. Lay also told the girl she should not "snitch" on him.
The girl's grandmother spoke at sentencing about the ongoing effects of Lay's abuse on her granddaughter. She asked the court to impose a lengthy sentence.
After hearing sentencing arguments, Judge Thomas Fincham imposed a 35-year prison term, rejecting the criminal defense attorney's argument for the statutory minimum sentence of 10 years in prison.
Zahnd said, "The defendant cut short this girl's childhood, something she'll never be able to regain. Judge Fincham's sentence rightly vindicated her tragic loss of innocence at the hands of this man's sexual deviance."
The case was investigated by the Platte City Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Justin Kalwei.
A photo of Lay is above. If you need additional information, please contact our office's media liaison, Tanya Faherty.
Eric G. Zahnd
Platte County Prosecuting Attorney
415 Third Street, Suite 60
Platte City, Missouri 64079