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After a prison beating, a Pastor convicted of raping his grandchildren was awarded $2 million


In exchange for the beatings he endured at the Attica Correctional Facility, Roy Harriger, a 79-year-old New York pastor who was found guilty of raping two of his granddaughters and allegedly abusing both his oldest son and his sister, can now receive $2 million from the state.

In 2015, Harriger received a 15-year state prison sentence after being found guilty on two of the three counts of a course of sexual conduct towards his grandkids.

According to New York State law, sexual conduct against a child in the first degree is when a perpetrator, who must be at least 18 years old, “engages in two or more acts of sexual conduct, which include at least one act of sexual intercourse, deviate sexual intercourse, or aggravated sexual contact, with a child less than thirteen (13) years of age over a period of time not less than three months in duration.”

According to the Livingston County News, Harriger was taken to Attica and was only there for a short time when the assaults took place.

The disgraced pastor sued the State of New York and prevailed in 2019, allegedly abusing his grandchildren in 2000 and 2001 while serving as the pastor of Ashwood Wesleyan Church in Lyndonville.

He received $1.75 million for previous pain and suffering on November 24, 2020, and $250,000 for future pain and suffering from the judge.

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The award was contested by the state. However, the Fourth Department of the New York Supreme Court’s state appellate division unanimously affirmed the verdict on Friday, according to Livingston County News.

According to court records, Harriger stated that throughout the 16 days before to the assault, prison personnel at Attica made it apparent to him that they were aware of the nature of his conviction.

Judge James Punch of Orleans County Court referred to Harriger as “a wolf in shepherd’s garb” in an article published in the Orleans Hub in April 2015.

Three of Harriger’s grandkids testified at his trial in January of that year, claiming that he had molested them. The 71-year-old preacher refuted the charges at the time.

I didn’t do anything like this, Harriger claimed.

The Community Fellowship Church in Hartland, where Harriger served at the time of his trial, provided a large amount of support for him. However, Judge Punch stated that after hearing testimony and examining the evidence against the pastor, a jury of his peers unanimously determined that he had assaulted two of his grandkids.

In 2015, Punch stated, “I have no issue with the jury’s decision.” “A jury of twelve of your peers unanimously found you guilty of highly distressing and depraved deeds committed against your grandchildren, who were very young victims.

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Harriger is accused of using his authority as a preacher and as the head of his family to intimidate his victims.

Punch alleged that these youngsters had been victimized and kept quiet by bullying, the use of charisma, and the strength of your personality. You could be described as a “wolf in sheep’s clothing,” but that isn’t quite as bad as being a “wolf in shepherd’s garb.”

After the verdict, George Harriger, the oldest son, and Nona Blackchief, his sister, told reporters that the pastor had also assaulted them.

Although I believe he received a low sentence, justice was unquestionably served, according to George Harriger. But now he’s actually in jail.

He stated, “I wish he would have admitted it and expressed regret. “My kids deserve an apology, as do my nieces and nephews, my aunt, and everyone else. He has to accept responsibility.

Blackchief claimed that when she was a young girl, her brother mistreated her. “This has been going on for more than 60 years,” she said.

In court filings, Harriger claimed that prison guards had led him to feel they wanted him to end his life. He claimed that he went without food for 72 hours and received notes threatening to end his life by using a razor and a sheet.

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Harriger claimed that he hardly ever left his cell and never had baths in the period before the assault, which took place on May 15, 2013. Only once did he eat with the other prisoners, and other than visiting and recreation, he never attended meals or showers in the weeks before the assault.

He claimed that during an orientation session on the day of the assault, a correctional official declared the institution was on lockdown at approximately 10:30 a.m. Protective custody was provided when Harriger, who uses a cane to get around, was asked to leave the room.

The discredited pastor claimed that while being taken, an officer banged his head against a wall and instructed him to remain the posture for 15 minutes. Harriger claimed that when returning to his cell, he was struck twice on the back of the neck, causing him to trip and pass out. The pastor allegedly suffered from face drooping, speech impairment, right-side paralysis, and wheelchair dependence as a result of the beatings.


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