Marcellus man sentenced to prison for sexually assaulting minor

Published 2:10 pm Friday, July 22, 2022

CASSOPOLIS – A man who molested a young girl numerous times over several years was sentenced to prison Friday in Cass County Circuit Court. The victim spoke before the sentencing and said she had attempted suicide and continues to suffer from depression and anxiety. 

Jason Lee Fedewa, 44, of Cranberry Street in Marcellus, was convicted last month by a Cass County Circuit Court jury of six counts: three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct (CSC) and three counts of second-degree criminal sexual conduct, all involving a defendant over age 17 and a victim age 13 or younger. 

Cass County Circuit Judge Mark Herman sentenced Fedewa to three concurrent counts of 25 year to 50 years in prison on the first-degree CSC counts and seven to 15 years in prison on the second-degree CSC counts. He has credit for 30 days already served. First-degree CSC carries a mandatory minimum sentence of 25 years in prison. 

He must register as a sex offender, be on lifetime electronic monitoring and pay fines and costs of $998. Restitution will be determined at a later date. 

The incidents which involved penetration and contact occurred over a five year period ending in 2020, when the victim was between ages seven and 13. 

The victim told Judge Herman that she has a fear of going to sleep at night, of showering and of being alone. She has tried to commit suicide several times by cutting herself. She noted that she had lost relationships with family members who believed Fedewa and not her. 

“I hate him with all my guts,” the victim said. “… He felt like he could do what he wanted to me and get away with it. I want peace, I lost my childhood … I want him to go to prison for as long as possible. I have to deal with this the rest of my life.” 

St. Joseph County, Mich. Assistant Prosecutor Deborah Davis tried the case. “Listening to the testimony was extremely sad,” she said. “… He’s not sorry and doesn’t think he’s done anything wrong. This case is going to be over shortly but will never be for her, she will deal with this the rest of her life.” 

Defense attorney Shannon Sible said his client had lost his job, his reputation, his family and his freedom. “He thinks given his age, he will end up dying in prison that seems pretty harsh to me,” he said.  

Judge Herman noted that Fedewa had thrown his life away with his actions and also destroyed the victim’s life and childhood. “If you can’t see how your actions affected everyone, then there is no hope for change but you will have a good long time to ponder that,” he said. 

While Davis had asked for at least two of the sentences to be consecutive and not concurrent, Herman said he couldn’t see where he had the authority to do so. He did note that he exceeded the guidelines on two of the CSC second counts which he said was justified given Fedewa’s actions.