KNOXVILLE (WATE) – A Knoxville man was convicted Monday of sexually abusing a 9-year-old girl and was sentenced to 16 years in prison without parole.
Rodney Dewayne Kitts, 44, pleaded guilty to aggravated sexual battery. Prosecutors said several years ago, Kitts was dating a family member of the victim. While spending the night with that family member, the victim awoke to Kitts sexually assaulting her on the couch.
The girl then pretended to be asleep and rolled over. Kitts then removed his hand from her pants and took her to bed.
The victim waited years to come forward because she said she was afraid Kitts would hurt her, according to prosecutors. Investigators were able to gather enough evidence and arrested Kitts in 2014.
“Those who molest children have no place in our society,” said District Attorney General Charme Allen. “Because of the bravery shown by this victim coming forward, this perpetrator will be locked up for a very long time.”