MALONE - A Constable man was sentenced Wednesday to 40 years behind bars for raping a 12-year-old girl.
In December, a Franklin County jury had taken just 26 minutes to return 13 guilty verdicts against Donald Gokey, convicting him of four counts of first-degree rape, five counts of first-degree criminal sexual act and four counts of endangering the welfare of a child.
The charges stemmed from four different incidents in which Gokey, who is now 25, had sex with a girl who was 12 years old at the time, between January and March of 2011.
At his sentencing Wednesday, Acting Franklin County Court Judge Kathleen Rogers sentenced Gokey to 10 years on each of the rape counts, seven years on most of the criminal sex act counts and one year on the endangering charges. The sex act and endangering sentences will run concurrent to the rape sentences, which will run consecutively.
Franklin County District Attorney Derek Champagne told the Enterprise his office initially tried to resolve the case with a plea deal so the victim wouldn't have to testify at trial.
"A lot of times the victims in cases like this are hesitant to come forward," Champagne said. "This girl did not come forward initially. Her mother found a text message. That was how it was discovered, through his threats and intimidation, saying, 'Don't tell anybody about this.' I give her tremendous credit for having the courage to come forward and testify at trial."
The case was prosecuted by Champagne and Assistant DA Gary Pasqua. Edward Narrow of Syracuse represented Gokey.