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Augusta man convicted of child molestation

Wednesday, Jan. 8, 2014 4:21 PM
Last updated 7:33 PM
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A jury convicted an Augusta man of child molestation Wednesday at the conclusion of a three-day trial.

Walter W. Underwood Jr., an ordained minister, denied all charges but a Richmond County Superior Court jury found no reasonable doubt about his guilt.

Underwood, 60, was taken into custody immediately. He will be sentenced at a later date.

Earlier this week, a 14-year-old girl told the jury that Underwood used the occasions when he baby-sat to molest her and her siblings. It started with touching when she was 8 years old and escalated into attempted rape before her next birthday in 2008.

It wasn’t the first time he had molested a child, another witness testified. When she was 12 in 2003-2004, Underwood fondled her, a young woman told the jury.

Comments (14) Add comment
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happychimer
17755
Points
happychimer 01/08/14 - 05:38 pm
7
0
May he get a sentence that

May he get a sentence that fits the awful crimes he did.

nocnoc
42779
Points
nocnoc 01/08/14 - 07:01 pm
6
3
I agree with HappyChimer

and add may the witnesses stick to their documented statements.

We don't need another Scott Dean case undermining local DA/DFCS and the court system.

mll
665
Points
mll 01/08/14 - 08:37 pm
6
1
I know nothing about the facts in this case.

With this being said, I wonder why it has taken so long for this to be adjudicated & what went on between 2008 & now. Was the information of the crime just now coming out? Was there documented physical proof of the crime? I assume there was & this is not another case of she said/he said. I wish the Chronicle would offer more facts in the case or if I have missed the article detailing the case I apologize.
The only other question I have is that this other victim testified that she experienced a crime done by this man in 2003-2004, is there physical or otherwise other documentation of the facts or a police complaint on record of this instance or again is it just another he said/she said.

& NOCNOC, I don't believe the Scott Dean case undermined the local DA, DFCS, court system......I believe the local DA, DFCS & court officials undermined the Scott Dean case. We shall see.

mythoughts4this
13
Points
mythoughts4this 01/08/14 - 09:49 pm
5
1
courtroom info

This molestation took place over a period of 5 years. The recent learning of this matter by his children, sister, and wife when confront he stated to them "I molested the victim". " I did it" He was given 48 hours by family members to turn himself in to authorities, but instead tried to over dose on pills. His family also testified against him to the facts of the case. There were forensics involved as well..

mll
665
Points
mll 01/08/14 - 10:25 pm
3
0
to mythoughts4this

After reading your comment then I agree that this man SHOULD go to prison asap. It's a shame that such an awful crime went unchecked for so long. People like him make me sick & they deserve to spend their lives behind bars. Prayers to the children & the family for a complete recovery from this man's actions.

corgimom
32627
Points
corgimom 01/09/14 - 07:55 am
2
0
I hope he never gets out of

I hope he never gets out of prison.

To the girls and their families, I pray that God gives you healing and peace. What courage it took for those girls to tell, and testify against him.

And for him, I hope he rots in Hell for what he did.

And I'm sure he has many, many more victims.

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 01/09/14 - 09:28 am
1
0
Great to hear he was not convicted by an unsubstantiated claim
Unpublished

Great to hear he was not convicted by an unsubstantiated claim

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 01/09/14 - 09:29 am
1
0
No jury can assign guilt based on one unsubstantiated claim.
Unpublished

No jury can assign guilt based on one unsubstantiated claim.

soapy_725
43678
Points
soapy_725 01/09/14 - 09:31 am
1
0
Marinerman1
4857
Points
Marinerman1 01/09/14 - 10:10 am
3
1
mil Stole My Thunder

Sorry nocnoc, as mil said above, the DA, DFCS, AND the Judge undermined the Scott Dean case. There were items entered into testimony that had no business being allowed, there were items that were denied that should have been allowed to be entered, and now the DA will not indict the daughter so that there can be new trial, and get this all cleared up. I'm not defending Scott for anything else he might've done, but this case smelled like rotting fish the moment I read the indictment.

scoopdedoop64
2366
Points
scoopdedoop64 01/09/14 - 02:39 pm
1
0
As a minister I am appalled.

As a minister I am appalled. It is terrible when someone uses their role as a responsible and supposedly trustworthy adult to hurt a child. For over 25 years I have been a minister and I have taken every opportunity to guard both myself and others from such abuse. It doesn't matter whether it is a minister, teacher, or even a police officer they deserve the maximum sentence because they used their position to abuse a child.

nocnoc
42779
Points
nocnoc 01/09/14 - 02:43 pm
2
0
Excuse my poor earlier wording

We need a strong respected court system that citizens see as fair, just and welling to act in that manner.

The Scott Dean case, with witness recanting, and the courts at multiple levels failing to morally act for a number of legal and obviously personal/political reasons has tarnished, if not completely damaged that creditability for some time to come.

NEXT time I'll be more clear.

nocnoc
42779
Points
nocnoc 01/09/14 - 02:49 pm
2
0
BTW: People

Please call me out when I screw up.

I enjoy counter discussions.
It is what makes the world go round.
Actually it doesn't rotate for that reason.

mythoughts4this
13
Points
mythoughts4this 01/09/14 - 07:43 pm
0
0
Additional Court Info

This man was the victims step grandparent on the fathers side. The court referred to his method as a grooming method. Where he played games with the children. As to pushing the child on the ground and with a spray bottle spraying the victim with water stating " I pee'd on you". The grooming process is just that where he had gained their trust enough to take things further. also he did in fact deposit bodily fluids. These are just some of many tips of the case. In this type of situation it is hard for the victim at the age of 8 to understand when she is told by the father and step mother she has to listen to him being her step grandfather and do as he says. at that age you try to please your father and step mother not to get in trouble for not listening. This is a personal case to me unfortunately so I do have all my facts straight . And I know 100% of the facts I was there in the courtroom. The details are really to explicit to list in a public forum as to this .. but will give anyone the answers to questions pertaining to this .. The abuse continued from 2004 to 2013 the first victim from 03 to 08 until she was able to move out and second victim from 08 to 13 unsure of how many more there really are .

2536
4
Points
2536 01/09/14 - 08:04 pm
0
0
Your facts are not correct. I

Your facts are not correct. I know the family and he was convicted on one child not two. The one witness who testified was not molested by him but by her father. There was never any charges brought against him for the witness who testified against him. Also, this was stated that it was only in 2008 not through 2013 as he hasn't been able to have contact with them since APRIL. Also, he never said I did it and stated he molested her. As stated by a witness who was present when the family confronted him. People comment when they don't know the situation and all the facts. There is no physical proof as it was brought up 5 years after the fact. An furthermore why wasnt his other granddaughters who he babysat for and are a slightly older than the child molested? because it's personal for you, you are coloring it in your favor and clearly not expressing the facts.

mythoughts4this
13
Points
mythoughts4this 01/10/14 - 06:46 pm
0
0
no favor 2536

never stated he was convicted on 2 victims. I did state he had 2 victims one in which was his niece and the other was a step grandchild. I never stated physical I stated forensic .. there is a difference.. and according to the witnesses . which are in the court records was "underwood stated I molested the victim I did it" now this was testimony from all 3 of his children plus his sister in which testified on his behalf as well stated these things. both victims testified. Never the less he molested these young girls. It started with one victim in 2003 the second in 2008 and did not end until 2013. The behavior towards this victim continued according to the forensic expert until feb of 2013. My facts have come from the courtroom as I took notes as the trial went on. 12 jury members found him guilty not one jury member found him not guilty on 2 charges of child molestation. He molested none that was blood related to him it was only victims of non blood relation which was stated in court of the grooming process. to color something of this in my favor.. for what .. I feel sorry for the girls their parents and the ones who testified. I have no favor in this at all I helped make sure justice was served for these two brave young ladies their voice was not heard till years later in fear of tearing a secondary family apart. They are the ones who has stopped this sick vile man from molesting children any longer. As I stated before I do have my facts. Maybe you need to read the courts documents of this matter with a fine tooth comb these girls deserved justice and that is what they are receiving after living in a tormented hell of silence for years.

LillyfromtheMills
13309
Points
LillyfromtheMills 01/11/14 - 08:17 pm
0
0
Never in my wildest dreams

Would I put my children in a position for this to happen to them. Ya'll call yell at me that my life is different from yours, And I'd say you're damned right - you can be rich, you can be poor - but if you have these little precious children, you have no other job greater than them!

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