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Prosecutor says no charges will be filed for alleged sexual assault at elementary school in Cody

Vehicles drive on a downtown road in Cody, Wyoming
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Park County’s top prosecutor says there is not enough evidence to file charges in an alleged sexual assault incident at Livingston Elementary in Cody.

Prosecuting Attorney Bryan Skoric reviewed the Cody Police Department’s investigation and in a letter dated January 9th wrote that “there will be no charges filed as the investigation into these allegations does not support that any crimes ever occurred.”

But the parents of the victim disagree that there’s no evidence. We are not disclosing the name of the parents to protect the child’s identity. The mom says after her daughter was allegedly sexually assaulted and beaten by older girls in a school bathroom, she took her to her primary care provider.

“The doctor did see signs of vaginal penetration and a torn hymen and she believed she was a victim of sexual assault based on what she saw,” she said.

But, the prosecuting attorney questioned the physician assistant’s qualifications to conduct a sexual assault exam and wrote that the provider did not follow best practices.

“Aside from the opinion alone of this physician assistant, nothing in the review of medical records or otherwise establishes that a sexual assault occurred,” the prosecuting attorney wrote.

The mother says she told the detective she would be willing to take her daughter in for a second exam, but never heard back. The letter does not indicate that a second exam occurred.

The letter also says that camera footage outside of the bathroom did not reveal that the girl was physically or sexually assaulted and that in an interview with a child advocacy center the child fabricated part of her story.

The mother says her daughter was consistent in the details of the incident that she shared saying “everybody she’s spoken to she’s told the same story.”

Since the alleged incident the family has moved out of state.

“Our daughter is starting in a brand new school with new people and everything is turned upside down for us, but these other kids just get to keep going on as if nothing happened,” she said.

The prosecuting attorney’s office and the Cody Police Department did not respond in time to requests for comment.

WPR reached out to the school district asking when the timeline of their Title IX investigation would be completed. In an email the Superintendent wrote “The PCSD 6 Title IX report has not been completed at this time.”

Olivia Weitz is based at the Buffalo Bill Center of the West in Cody. She covers Yellowstone National Park, wildlife, and arts and culture throughout the region. Olivia’s work has aired on NPR and member stations across the Mountain West. She is a graduate of the University of Puget Sound and the Transom story workshop. In her spare time, she enjoys skiing, cooking, and going to festivals that celebrate folk art and music.
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