New Kensington man gets up to 20 years in prison for raping child |
Valley News Dispatch

New Kensington man gets up to 20 years in prison for raping child

Rich Cholodofsky

A New Kensington man will serve up to 20 years in prison for raping a child.

Edward McNeal, 63, pleaded guilty Monday to charges that he had sex with a 9-year-old girl and continued the sexual assaults for another seven years.

Westmoreland County Common Pleas Judge Rita Hathaway ordered McNeal to serve 7 to 20 years in prison after McNeal said it was in his best interest to admit guilt to charges of rape of a child, statutory sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, child endangerment, corruption of minors and indecent assault.

“I cannot ever imagine the trauma this child endured over all those years,” Hathaway said.

According to court records, a 21-year-old woman told police in 2016 she had been McNeal’s victim starting in 2004, when he forced her to have sex at his home in New Kensington and at another location in Venango County.

Police said McNeal initially denied the allegations but, during an interrogation in 2016, later admitted that his memory was not reliable because of his prior alcohol consumption.

“I used to drink a lot. It might have happened, but I really don’t think so,” McNeal told police.

In court on Monday, McNeal declined to make a statement during the sentencing portion of his hearing.

As a condition of his sentence, McNeal was ordered to have no further contact with any children. He also will be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life once he is released from prison, the judge said.

Rich Cholodofsky is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Rich at 724-830-6293, [email protected] or via Twitter .

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