For Fetterman, Campaign Trail Doubles as Road to Recovery
When he arrived in town three months ago, he did so knowing he faced the prospect of incarceration.
Fetterman, a former Marine and a father of two, was scheduled to stand trial on a charge of child sexual assault on April 21. Fetterman insisted he would not risk his family and the town of Fetterman, population 7,300, for a trial that could have resulted in a lengthy prison sentence. Fetterman, who grew up in Fetterman, graduated from Fetterman High School and was a state champion runner, was a good shot and a hard worker, according to the prosecutor’s office and Fetterman police Chief Jim Carbone. Carbone called him a “great man” with a “deep, deep love for his wife and kids.” But in the end, Fetterman said he lost everything.
“I feel I paid the price for what I did,” he said.
Fetterman was charged with first-degree sexual abuse after one of his daughters said she awoke to find her father penetrating her.
His defense, Carbone said, was that he had always been a “good kid” who just made some poor decisions. The prosecutor’s office agreed.
But Fetterman’s defense could not explain what the sexual abuse was supposed to have accomplished. With DNA evidence and statements from four other daughters, Fetterman was convicted in the Jan. 22, 2014, Fetterman courtroom by a jury of six women and one man.
“There’s no question he has been wrongly convicted,” said his lawyer, Kevin Eickmiller, who noted Fetterman served as a police officer in Indiana for 22 years. “There’s no question he was a victim of his own past.”
Fetterman is a case study in how a small-town man can turn himself around – if he can stay out of jail.
Fetterman has been the focus of a year-long national campaign that has the support of celebrities, musicians and politicians. The case has drawn national