A local man convicted of rape will be granted a new trial by Kansas Court of Appeals because of mistakes made by the prosecutor.
One of the victims, Justise Mongold, said the decision is a huge blow to survivors.
When she heard the news, her heart sank.
“I have a little girl now and stuff like this worries me every day,” said Mongold.
Jacob Ewing was convicted in 2017 of raping her, only to have the case overturned two years later.
While she’s tried to move on from what happened, it hasn’t been an easy process.
“It’s hard because I’ve really lived with it every day,” said Mongold. “I have flashbacks.”
The appeals court says the prosecutor, Jacqie Spradling, made a mistake. Now a new trial could be ordered, requiring Mongold to live through the attack again in court.
Attorney Chris Joseph with the law firm Joseph, Hollander & Craft in Topeka said this can compromise the ability to get justice for the victims.
“You deprive the defendant to a fair trial,” said Joseph. “The courts are going to reverse it and you have to start all over. The whole thing was wasted because the prosecutor did not simply just play by the rules.”
Michelle McCormick with the YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment said coming forward is difficult for victims.
“Thinking about the impact and how incredibly difficult that is, and how brave the people are who do come forward and do that, but thinking about them having to do that all over again, it’s heartbreaking for me,” said McCormick.
While it’s out of her hands what happens next, Mongold said she hopes sharing her story can help other survivors going through the same thing.
“You’re not alone,” said Mongold. “There’s people out there that will help you and will help you get through it and support you.”
You can view Mongold’s full interview below:
The YWCA Center for Safety and Empowerment provides free confidential services for victims of domestic and sexual violence, stalking, and human trafficking in Shawnee, Jackson, and Wabaunsee Counties. To learn about their services, click HERE.