Meriwether County man gets life sentence for raping 10-year-old girl

Mario Dante Clemons

Credit: Meriwether County Sheriff's Office

Credit: Meriwether County Sheriff's Office

A Meriwether County man was sentenced to life in prison for raping and molesting his girlfriend’s 10-year-old daughter, authorities said.

Mario Dante Clemons, 31, of Manchester, was convicted Friday of one count of rape, two counts of aggravated child molestation, two counts of child molestation and one count of enticing a child for indecent purposes, prosecutors said. His trial lasted four days.

The investigation into Clemons began in September when the victim’s grandmother noticed the girl was acting differently and asked her about it, said Herb Cranford, district attorney for the Coweta Judicial Circuit.

The child told her grandmother that her mother’s boyfriend was sexually abusing her. She was taken to the hospital, where doctors discovered evidence of the sexual assault, authorities said.

Clemons was sentenced to three concurrent life sentences followed by 20 years of probation with sex offender conditions.

“We are thankful for the jury paying close attention to the evidence and conveying through their verdict that the victim’s voice was heard,” Cranford said in a statement. “In addition, we are thankful to the jury for holding this defendant accountable for his crimes against this young child.”

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