An area woman recently pleaded guilty in St. Francois County to sexual abuse involving a young girl.
Shelbi Nichole Bowyer, 31, of Bonne Terre, had initially been charged with two felony counts of first-degree sodomy in 2018. However, she pleaded guilty in December to the amended charge of second-degree sexual assault, a Class A misdemeanor.
Upon the state's recommendation, Circuit Judge Wendy Wexler Horn sentenced Bowyer to serve 360 days in the St. Francois County Jail, granting credit for time served.
According to a probable cause statement, in May 2018, a girl less than 8 years old was interviewed by a Children's Advocacy Center (CAC) forensic interviewer at the CAC Office.
During the forensic interview, the child disclosed that she had been subjected to sexual contact by Bowyer.
The young girl explained that Bowyer had touched her "flower" with her hands, so the interviewer provided a diagram for the girl to identify where she was touched. She showed the interviewer that Bowyer had touched her inappropriately in her private area.
She reportedly explained the different ways Bowyer had touched her inappropriately and how she also touched her rear end.
On May 31, 2018, a deputy with the St. Francois County Sheriff's Department was made aware of the allegations and initiated a criminal investigation. The deputy reported that throughout the investigation, many interviews were conducted.
The report stated the statements made by the girl during the CAC interview were all consistent with statements she made to other people whom the deputy interviewed. The deputy noted that the statements made were also consistent with someone who had suffered the type of sexual contact the child incurred.
The girl was able to identify Bowyer as the person who inappropriately touched her.
The case was prosecuted by St. Francois County Assistant Prosecuting Attorney Courtney Goodwin.
Bobby Radford is a reporter for the Daily Journal. He can be reached at email@example.com