It didn't matter that the crime happened two decades ago.

In 2000, Bruce Sloyer sexually abused the then-child. She's an adult with children now.

For the victim, the events that occurred then seem like they happened yesterday, she told a district court judge during Sloyer's sentencing hearing Thursday afternoon.

"I go through pain from that daily," the victim said in court.

On the first count, Sloyer will serve 24 to 28 months in the Wyoming State Penitentiary. On the second, he will serve three to five years of probation.

A case from 2000 was reopened Sept. 13 when a police officer took a report from a resident who said his neighbor, Sloyer, was "'making weird comments about children.'"

The officer also spoke with Sloyer's wife, who said she doesn't trust her husband around children because he sometimes would make "inappropriate comments'" about them, and that she referred to him as a "sex offender."

Later that day, Sloyer went to the police station and explained that his wife had accused him of being a sex offender because he did "some things" about two decades ago, and he should have faced criminal charges. Sloyer said he had sexually abused a young girl several times but did not tell anyone.

An investigator with the Natrona County Sheriff's Office found a report from the Wyoming Department of Family Services that on Feb. 23, 2000, the alleged victim -- then 13 -- had disclosed sexual abuse by Sloyer.

During Thursday's hearing, the victim said she's been waiting for years to get justice in the case  She drove 1,400 miles to be in court to set an example for her children and other sexual abuse victims in Wyoming.

"I'm glad I didn't keep it quiet," the victim said. "I'm glad I laid it out there."

Sloyer's attorney, Joseph Cole noted Sloyer has been through voluntary treatment. He noted that Sloyer voluntarily came forward, even if it was after 18 years.

Cole asked for a probation sentence on both counts.

"What I did 20 years ago was wrong," Sloyer said, adding that he is at peace after confessing.

A therapist treating Sloyer said there's roughly a 4 percent chance that he would repeat his actions.

But that wasn't enough for Natrona County District Attorney Dan Itzen, who said it is difficult to relay the 4 percent number back to the victim. The sentence isn't about rehabilitation; it's about punishment for a serious crime.

"I do know of one location where there won't be children," Itzen said. "I know a place where punishment happens — and that's the state penitentiary."

After the hearing concluded, a Natrona County Sheriff's deputy led Sloyer out of the courtroom to be remanded to the Wyoming Department of Corrections.


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