Jose Miguel Aldana has been convicted of rape and child molestation.
Photo: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office
Photo: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

DA: Gwinnett mom didn’t report rapist because she needed his money

A Gwinnett County woman refused to report that a family member was molesting and raping her daughter for three years because she depended on the rapist’s money to pay rent, the district attorney’s office said.

The girl told a friend and boyfriend about the abuse in May 2016, and they told a counselor at the girl’s school. The counselor told police and Jose Miguel Aldana was charged with rape and child molestation. 

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Aldana, 35, was convicted of the charges on March 30 after a weeklong trial. The victim’s parents have not been charged with any crime. 

The abuse began when the girl was 10 years old, the DA’s office said. Aldana molested the girl for two years before she told her mother. The girl’s mother asked her where Aldana had touched her and told her to “stop play fighting” with Aldana “because her body was changing,” according to the DA’s office. The girl’s mother did not kick Aldana out of the house or contact law enforcement because she was dependent on his income, officials said. 

“A few weeks” after the victim told her mother about the abuse, Aldana raped the girl in her bedroom. He went into her room naked in the early hours of the morning, “pounced” on her and held her down, the DA’s office said. 

After Aldana’s arrest, the victim’s parents were “evasive” during questioning by police. The parents later took the victim to the district attorney’s office, where she recanted her account of the sexual assault. During the trial, she said that Aldana did sexually assault her but her parents had pressured her to recant because of the financial strain that Aldana’s incarceration caused. 

At trial, the victim’s mother denied needing Aldana’s money and denied that her daughter had reported the abuse. 

Aldana was sentenced to life in prison. 

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Authorities say the suspect had very little to say about what happened.

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