Screenshot: WTOL

A high school student’s essay led to the arrest of a man who admitted raping her and her two sisters when they were children.

School officials at Vanguard Tech Center in Fremont, Ohio alerted child services and the sheriff’s office after the unnamed student detailed the years of sexual abuse she and her sisters experienced for a homework assignment about overcoming obstacles. Local CBS News affiliate WTOL reports the man is a member of the student’s family.

Detectives arrested 43-year-old Anthony Knight, who later pled guilty to three felony rape charges and was sentenced to 20 years. He will also have to register as a third tier sex offender, the most severe conviction.

The Associated Press reports that the student was initially reluctant to come forward because the sexual abuse occurred years prior, but detectives found enough corroborated evidence after interviewing the three sisters to arrest Knight.

Detective Sergeant Kenneth Arp credits the investigation’s success to the school staff and hopes that this will encourage other survivors to reach out, even if the incident happened years ago.

Advertisement

From the AP:

“I think that these types of things happen a lot more often then what the average person might think that it does,” Detective Arp said. “I think that if you talk to different investigators around the area they will tell you that they work a lot of sexual assault cases similar to this. This one happens to have a positive outcome and unfortunately a lot don’t, but I think it sends a great message.”

At a time when the national discourse on sexual assault is focusing on chiding survivors of sexual assault for not coming forward earlier with “hard evidence,” it’s nice to remember that there are some people out there achieving some semblance of justice.