Flickr photo by walknbostonTonya Craft, the 37-year-old kindergarten teacher who was arrested in 2008 and charged with molesting three girls (ages 5 and 6), was found not guilty today after a five-week trial.
Members of the Truth for Tonya Facebook page are rejoicing.
Craft maintained her innocence throughout her two-year ordeal and even took the stand in her defense, saying, "I did not and I have not sexually abused any child."
Conflicting details emerged during Craft's trial. One of the alleged victims admitted to lying in a previously taped interview; another said she was promised a toy for talking to police.
Experts for the prosecution and defense didn't agree on whether the alleged victims showed signs of sexual abuse.
The defense argued that the allegations were a conspiracy against Tonya by the mothers of the alleged victims who were using their children to get revenge. Attorneys said the parents led their children to believe that Craft had touched them inappropriately, following an incident of child-on-child touching that was discovered.
If that's true, what kind of mother would put their young child through such an ordeal?
Craft has reportedly spent more than $500,000 on her defense. Since being arrested, she lost her job, her home, and custody of her daughter.
If she had been convicted, she would've faced up to 400 years in jail.