A judge has made a ruling on the use of videotaped testimony from a now-dead Cedar Rapids girl. District Judge Denver Dillard says the video cannot be used as evidence in the trial of 34-year-old James Bentley of Vinton, the man accused of sexually abusing 10-year-old Jetseta Gage.
Judge Dillard agreed with a defense attorney who said the videotape violates Bentley’s right to confront his accuser. The tape reportedly details three years of abuse but Bentley’s lawyer was not allowed to cross-examine Gage. Trial is to start July 10th in Clarke County — a move due to publicity.
Bentley’s brother Roger was convicted earlier this year and is serving a life prison term for the girl’s kidnapping and murder in March of 2005.