18 people charged in connection to sexually abusing child in Yates County

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. – Eighteen people were charged in April in connection with sexually abusing a child in Yates County.

Tuesday the Yates County District Attorney Todd Casella said that among the people charged, one was the victim’s adoptive mother and another was her aunt. He said that he has never seen a sex trafficking case as bad as this one.

“It robs young lives of their innocence, their freedom and their future, and tragically, in this case, the very people entrusted to safeguard this young child were the ones abusing and orchestrating the abuse of her at the hands of strangers,” Casella said.

Casella says Andrew Daugherty started abusing the child back in 2019, under the same roof as her adoptive mother and aunt.

“As if being sexually abused by the two parent figures in her life wasn’t tragic enough, Daugherty went further,” Casella said.

Daugherty then sought out others, through his personal life and social media, to engage in sexual acts with the child. The DA says this happened from the time she was 12 years old, until his arrest when she was 15.

“A large number of them suffer from some degree of mental disability. They were intellectually limited to some some degree or another varying degrees of limitation. And they said one has been found incompetent as a result of those limitations. One is pending a hearing, but they were all limited to some degree,” Casella said.

Casella says Daugherty picked these people for a reason.

“They were people who were likely to be manipulated by him and to not ultimately report what had occurred to the authorities after such events happened.”

All of the people charged have pleaded guilty and 16 have been convicted and sentenced. One person was ruled to be incompetent to stand trial and another is still being evaluated.

Casella says that the victim is resilient and has a lot of supports around her to help her heal.