Fayette county man sentenced to jail for sexual abuse of children

FAYETTEVILLE, WV (WOAY) – An Oak Hill man will spend at least 15 years in prison after pleading guilty to sexually abusing children.

Jody T. Blankenship was charged with sexual abuse by a parent or other person of trust child and sexual abuse of a child younger than 12.

It stems from an investigation that started on April 14, 2022. A student told a school counselor that she had been sexually abused by Blankenship and that there were three other children in the home.

All three children were interviewed at the Just for Kids Advocacy Center, and investigators concluded that two of them had been molested.

Deputies served search warrants at Blankenship’s home. Blankenship originally told police he had sold the phones belonging to the children, but officers found phones with sexual messages between Blankenship and two victims.

After he was indicted, a third victim came forward.

Blankenship was previously convicted of third-degree sexual assault of a child. He will not be eligible for parole for 15 years but could serve up to 45 years.

He was sentenced to ten to 20 years for the charge of sexual abuse by a person in a position of trust of a child and five to twenty-five years for sexual abuse of a child under the age of 12.

If he is ever released, he must spend 50 years on supervised release, which means he cannot have any contact with children.

Fayette County Prosecuting Attorney Anthony Ciliberti prosecuted the case. Circuit Judge Paul Blake presided over the case.

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