Appeal of CW v. Fuller

McKean County District Attorney Stephanie L. Vettenburg-Shaffer reports that, by decision filed January 28, 2021, the Pennsylvania Superior Court has upheld the conviction of Eric Michael Fuller. 

On November 4, 2019, following a two day jury trial, Fuller was convicted of Statutory Sexual Assault (11 or more years older than victim)- Felony 1; Sexual Assault – Felony 2; Indecent Assault – Felony 3; Endangering Welfare of Child – Felony 3; Corruption of Minors – Misdemeanor 1; and Involuntary Deviate Sexual Intercourse – Felony 1.

Fuller’s appeal challenged the sufficiency of the evidence as well as a pre-trial determination by the Court on the admissibility of hearsay statements made by a child under the Tender Years Hearsay Act.

The Tender Years Hearsay Act allows hearsay statements of young children who are victims or witnesses to crime to be admitted at a trial under specific circumstances.  

The District Attorney’s Office filed a motion asking the Judge to allow the use of these statements at the trial.  By Order dated June 4 2019, the Judge made findings on what statements would be admissible if the child also testified at the future trial.

The Superior Court affirmed the jury’s verdict, finding that the Commonwealth presented sufficient evidence for the Defendant to be found guilty of the charges, as well as affirming the Judge’s decision on allowing the hearsay statements of a child victim under the Tender Years Hearsay Act.

Following the trial, Judge Hauser sentenced Fuller to a period of 72 months to 180 months of incarceration.  He is required to register as a Sexual Offender for his lifetime.  Fuller is serving his sentence within the Pennsylvania Department of Corrections.