Community rallies around 64-year old rape victim

By Kimberly Holmes – bio | email

LIBERTY TOWNSHIP, OH (FOX19)  - The 14-year old Butler County boy accused of raping a 64-year old woman inside her Liberty Township was in court Wednesday.

A judge set a probable cause hearing for Feb. 9, when he will hear evidence and set a 2nd hearing that will determine whether or not the teen will be tried as an adult.

On Tuesday night, dozens of neighbors rallied in support of that rape victim, Phyllis Mays. Dozens of her relatives, friends, neighbors and members of her church family attended the vigil. It opened with prayer, and ended with a drive.

The group drove around the victim's Countryside Village Mobile Home Park to surround her with love and drive out the so-called evil.

"Everybody is just scared to death," said the victim's son, Chris Feltner. "They say every kid that they look at, that's around that age. They just wonder if they're going to get attacked, so we just wanted to have that candlelight here to pray for them as well."

Police said  the young suspect raped and robbed Mays earlier this month inside her own home.

"We're going to have to have some counseling for her," said the victim's sister Joann Knott. "And a lot of love to bring her through it. She just did not realize she was so loved. So many people standing behind her. It's just amazing to her."

Those at the vigil leaned on each other for strength. Family pastors said Mays is leaning on the Lord for hers.

"I think that if we can pray together for Phyllis," said family Pastor Kim Katterheinrich, "For her health and her recovery and for the community here and for the folks here, I think that's encouraging and strengthening and I believe in a God who answers prayer."

Prosecutors return to court Wednesday to ask a judge to try the suspect as an adult. Cindy Pennington said she knows the pain of that process. Pennington said her six year old daughter was raped by a 17 year old. She said the judge tried that suspect as a juvenile.

"There's too many kids out there just getting away with adult crimes," said Pennington. "And they need to be charged. And they need to show an example for the rest of the kids so they won't follow in their footsteps."

Mays' sister agreed.

"{The suspect} was out at night and a 14-year-old shouldn't have been out at night," Knott. said "We just want people to know {Mays} needs to vindicated. He did the adult crime. He needs to do the adult time."

Relatives were at the 14-year old suspect's hearing on Wednesday. The wore t-shirts saying, "No Mercy."

"We believe in no mercy, the crimes this kid committed, he deserves no mercy," said Feltner. "He showed no mercy therefore, he shall have no mercy."

Meantime, Mays' son said the family is trying to raise money to move his mother into a new home.

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