A western Iowa man who was convicted of sexually exploiting his 17-year old stepdaughter is protesting what he calls "injustices" in his case. In his letter to a federal judge, Brian Street of Griswold says he has been on a "hunger strike" for the past couple of weeks and that he will continue to starve himself unless someone listens to his complaints and his request for compassion for his stepdaughter Tracey Dyess, whom he says he loves.
Dyess was convicted of arson in the March 2005 fire at her family’s home in Griswold. She’s serving a 45-year prison sentence at the state women’s prison in Mitchellville. Dyess said she started the fire in an attempt to kill Street for years of sexual abuse, but it was her sister and nephew who died in the blaze. On June First, Dyess will be honored in a ceremony for earning her high school equivalency diploma while in prison.
Street, who will be sentenced at nine A.M. Thursday in U.S. District Court in Des Moines, faces up to 30 years in prison. In letters he wrote to Chief District Judge Robert Pratt, Street says regardless of how society judges his relationship with Dyess, their "love affair" was mutual. Street also complained that his lawyer, Chad Primmer, of Council Bluffs has not been effective and he wants a new attorney to help him file motions and appeals before he is sentenced.
Primmer is the fourth attorney to have been appointed in the case. In March, Judge Pratt ruled Primmer has acted appropriately, and denied Street’s request. Street says he won’t attend his sentencing Thursday, because he doesn’t want to hear what he says are "lies" Dyess will likely read in her victim statement.