Former councilman charged with sex crimes granted bond

By: Diane Cho
By: Diane Cho

A former Aiken County councilman charged with sex crimes will be granted bond.

47-year-old William, also known as Russ, Ferrara was arrested July 13.

Normally in cases involving sex crimes, we don't release the names of the victims. But in this case, 23-year-old Kari Cook says she wants the public to know just how dangerous she says William Ferrara really is.

It's not the first time this former Aiken County councilman has waited for a bond hearing in the past year.

47-year-old William Ferrera--who has a wife and two children--is already facing trial on charges of fondling a 13-year-old girl last June.

While his latest alleged victim is much older, she's just as vulnerable.

Kari Cook is deaf. Her little brother, 14-year-old Robert, was with her during our interview to translate from sign language.

"She was very scared," he says. "Every time she tells him no he gets mad, threatens her and stuff."

Worst of all, Kari says she believes Ferrara preyed on her because of her disability.

"He is a very dangerous person," Robert says.

He's also accused of asking her for sex in exchange for free rent at an apartment complex he owns.

Authorities say Ferrara also exposed himself and showed her obscene photos on a cell phone.

And now that he's been granted bond, Kari fears Ferrara will come after her.

"I'm moving out a long ways away from him," Robert translates for his sister. Then he adds his own thoughts: "I'm going to make sure he doesn't bother her anymore."

Judge Carter set Ferrara's bond at $22,000. Ferrara had to turn over his passport, and he was ordered to have no contact with the victim. He will also be placed under house arrest.

Ferrara is charged with aggravated assault and battery, solicitation of prostitution, two counts of indecent exposure and disseminating obscenities.

Mailing Address: P.O. Box 1212 Augusta, GA 30903 Main Telephone: (803) 278-1212 Newsroom: (803) 278-3111 Fax: (803) 442-4561
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