March 19, 2013

21-year-old sentenced to 10 years in prison for child molestation

Rachel Brown

— A Dalton man was sentenced Tuesday to 10 years in prison followed by 10 years on probation for molesting a then-12-year-old girl he met online.

Cody Allen Satterfield, now 21, of 1223 Green Springs Road, pleaded guilty to the crime two months ago in a negotiated plea in which charges of aggravated child molestation and enticing a child were dropped.

Superior Court Judge Cindy Morris conducted a pre-sentence investigation to consider the circumstances of the crime. Satterfield was about 19 at the time. Law enforcement officials have said the girl ran away from her home in Gordon County and called Satterfield to pick her up after meeting him on Facebook. Officials have said the girl even went with Satterfield to buy condoms.

He was charged because under Georgia law, children under 16 cannot legally consent to sex acts with an adult.

Defense attorney Jerry Moncus said the sentence is “harsher than what I had hoped for under the circumstances, but we accept the court’s ruling and will move forward.”

District Attorney Bert Poston said in a press release that officers became aware of the situation in 2011 after the child’s father reported her as a runaway.

“After initially denying any wrongdoing, Satterfield eventually admitted to the sexual conduct and admitted that he knew the girl was only 12,” the release stated.

Once Satterfield is released on probation, he will be prohibited from having contact with the victim and must comply with other sex offender conditions, including being required to register as a sex offender.