Belmont County Man Faces Three Counts of Rape

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A Belmont County man is in jail under a $1 million bond and facing three counts of rape.

According to police, David Edward Kerns III is accused of raping a child.

Officials say after years of silence, the child victim told her mother.

The child and mother were escorted to Reynolds Memorial Hospital, where a Sexual Assault Nurse Examiner was on duty.

The prosecutor says they discovered the child lived under tremendous pressure since the rapes began when she was eight years old.

“She lived a horrendous life, at least with regard to having to deal with him, for a period of eight years, she had to deal with this. He would tell her that if she disclosed this to anyone, that he would kill himself. So she lived with that for eight years. And finally she came forward,” said Belmont County Prosecutor, Dan Fry.

According to Fry, Kerns is held on three counts. He said the rapes began in 2008 and continued through last month, and it’s likely that it happened many more times than three.

Fry said the number of charges may change when the case goes to the grand jury.

And each count carries the possibility of life in prison.

Copyright 2020 Nexstar Broadcasting, Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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