Walker County Man Convicted of Child Molestation
May 24, 2023 – Lafayette, GA – On May 24, 2023, Stewart Arra Kelley
was convicted of four counts of Child Molestation and three counts of Sexual Battery Against a Child
Under the age of 16 by a Walker County jury following a two-day trial before the Honorable Judge
In February of 2020, the Walker County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report made by the wife of the
Defendant where a distant relative had asked her if she knew her husband was a child molester. During
the investigation, law enforcement discovered that the eldest daughter of the Defendant and stepdaughter
of the wife, had disclosed to this relative she had been sexually assaulted by the Defendant from the ages
of 10-16. The eldest daughter did not feel safe to disclose this abuse she had suffered at the hand of her
father until she had moved away from the home. Detective Zach Simpson with the Walker County
Sheriff’s office was assigned the case to investigate. He located and conducted an interview of the
eldest daughter, now a young adult, in which she disclosed to him the sexual abuse her father had
perpetrated on her during her childhood years.
During this time, the Defendant and his wife elected to separate and it was only a few days after he
moved from the home their four year old daughter disclosed she had been sexually assaulted by the
Defendant. Detective Zach Simpson scheduled a forensic interview with Senior Forensic Interviewer
Holly Kittle at the Children’s Advocacy Center. In that interview, the Defendant’s four-year-old
daughter disclosed that her father had sexually assaulted her in a similar manner in which he had
sexually assaulted his eldest daughter.
Over the course of the two-day trial, both daughters of the Defendant testified as well as individuals to
whom they had disclosed their sexual abuse. The Defendant made the claim that the allegations were
fabricated by the eldest daughter under the influence of her stepmother in an attempt to gain advantage
in their divorce and child custody proceedings. The Defendant further claimed the four year old
daughter must have mistaken her perpetrator as her mother’s new boyfriend. The jury rejected both of
the Defendant’s claims and chose to believe his two daughters’ brave outcry.
The State of Georgia was represented by Senior Assistant District Attorney Lynsay Chapman. The
assistance of Administrative Staff Keshia Simpson, Victim Advocate Donna Howell and Chief
Investigator Christy Smith was crucial in ushering justice in this case.
On June 20, 2023, the Defendant was sentenced to 45 years of probation with the first 25 years to be
served in confinement.
“Children should never be in danger, but we all know monsters exist who will
commit unspeakable sexual crimes on children and leave unseen scars on these victims forever. The
victims’ courage in coming forward, the professionalism of the Walker County Sheriff’s office, and the
hard work and trial acumen of Senior ADA Chapman and her trial team ensured that this Defendant was
found guilty” said District Attorney Clayton M. Fuller.