After entering a guilty plea to two counts of child molestation, Guy Richard Houze, 72, was sentenced by Cobb Superior Court Judge Sonja N. Brown to eight years in prison followed by seven years on probation.
He is also required to register as a sex offender an to abide by sex offender conditions of probation.
A public information release from Cobb County District Attorney Flynn D. Broady, Jr. described the incident leading to the arrest and sentencing as follows:
In January 2020, Cobb County Police Department received a referral through the Georgia Division of Family & Children Services after a 12-year-old girl disclosed that she was molested by her step-grandfather Guy Houze in Austell, GA. Detectives with Cobb County Special Victims Unit interviewed both girls. The older sister disclosed that her step-grandfather frequently molested her between the age of five through 12. She told detectives that it made her feel disgusting and that she would go numb when the molestations happened. She also told detectives that she blamed herself for this happening to her sister. The younger sister had a similar disclosure, telling detectives that she was molested between the age of seven to 11. Detectives also interviewed the mother of the girls in addition to the disclosure witnesses. After an interview with the defendant, detectives arrested Houze.
During the non-negotiated sentencing hearing, family and friends of the two sisters showed their support by attending court. The older sister, now 18 years old, spoke to Judge Brown stating, “This man took my innocence and robbed me of what little chance I had to have a normal childhood. He did this awful thing to me and yet, I seemed to be the one dealing with the repercussions. I know that today I may leave with some of this burden, which was never mine to bear, unloaded from me.” Statements from the younger sister and the girls’ mother were also read to the court.
Judge Brown said at sentencing, “A family member should be protector who ensures the emotional, mental, and physical health of those entrusted in their care. This is egregious and heinous behavior that continued over years. In cases where there is sexual abuse, there usually aren’t other people seeing it. That doesn’t mean that it didn’t happen. This sentence won’t fix or heal this. It will not make this family whole again, but there has to be some serious consequences.”
Assistant District Attorney Kristen Judd prosecuted this case.
Marietta attorney Justin Wyatt represented Houze.