Shifflet Trial Continues This Week

By
Megan Moseley

Dateline
Updated Mon, Mar 11, 2013 9:25 am

Prosecutors are expected to call their final witnesses Monday and Tuesday in the trial of a Glouster man accused of sexually assaulting five young girls.

Thomas Shifflet, 76, faces three counts of gross sexual imposition, one count of rape, and one count of sexual imposition.

The alleged victims were between the ages of three and 12 when the incidents were first reported in 2010.

The defense says they intend to call several witnesses to the stand to testify on behalf of Shifflet.

Although the prosecution has no DNA or fingerprint evidence it contends the eye-witness accounts from the victims will be enough to convict.

“This is not an accident of behavior,” Athens County Prosecutor Keller J. Blackburn told the jury during opening statements. “This is not an accident of someone picking someone up and accidentally grabbing them while trying to put them in a seat. As it shows, this is a pattern” he said.

Shifflet’s attorney John Lavelle has been trying to raise doubts about the credibility of the alleged victims throughout the trial.