Mother speaks about husband's alleged assault on daughter

By: Meredith Taylor
By: Meredith Taylor

Tracy Searles of McCormick is in jail, accused of molesting a young girl.

News 12's Meredith Taylor talks to Levoria Searles about her husband.

Levoria Searles is a woman desperately seeking the truth. And she has so many questions.

"I want to know what happened," she says. "I want to know what happened to change my baby."

In April, the now 8-year-old girl said she'd been molested by her stepfather.

"And in the beginning, I prayed that, you know, maybe it was something she was making up, maybe it was something she saw or heard from another child."

34-year-old Tracy Searles is charged with nine serious sexual assault charges involving the girl.

That's something his sister Watonya told News 12 she can't believe.

"They are charging him with this crime like he already did it, like he's guilty, and there's no if, ands, or buts about it," she said.

Levoria says she is not convicting her husband, but she says she knows something happened.

"They're his family," she says. "I expect them to stand by him. But I'm my daughter's family, and I have to stand beside her."

Investigators say Tracy Searles turned himself in on Thursday. Until he can make bond or there is a trial date, he'll be held at the Aiken Co. Detention Center.

The alleged sexual assaults took place between August of 2000 and November 2003, when the little girl was just 3.

Levoria can't understand why Tracy hasn't spoken up for himself.

"He has not said, 'I'm sorry you're going through this, but I didn't do it'," she says.

And now two families must wait for the truth.

"Why, why her?" Levoria asks. "She was a child who couldn't defend herself. Why?"

Bond is set at $120,000. So far, Tracy Searles has been unable to make that.

He and his wife have been separated since 2003, and the girl is seeing counselors.


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