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Teen rape survivor publicly addresses abuser in court to encourage other abuse victims

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ALBANY, N.Y. (WRGB) - An Albany County judge sentenced a Cohoes man to 50 years in prison today for raping his teen daughter.

Typically in a case like this we don't show the victim to protect their privacy, but in this case, the young lady wanted to send a public message to her abuser, to help encourage other potential victims of sex abuse to seek help.

Just before 39-year-old Derrick Rosa of Cohoes was sentenced Assistant District Attorney Jennifer McCanney reminded the courtroom what he did.

“This child, and that's what she was when he started raping her, was raped on a daily basis by her biological father,” McCanney said.

Rosa was convicted on multiple counts of rape in January.

“He has had no remorse through this process, and as he stands here today he is still in complete denial of his wrongdoing even with the exorbitant amount of proof in this case against him,” McCanney said.

Prosecutors said he forced the victim to perform sex acts and physically abused her over a three year period until she was 16 years old.

“I’ve learned that this victim is extremely resilient and will overcome what was done to her,” McCanney said.

The young victim made that clear, allowing cameras to show her reading this powerful message.

“Derrick, since all that has happened and that you've done to me when I was younger, it now makes me stronger and smarter than what I was before. I may not ever forgive, but I will grow up a better person than this now.”

She wants all victims of sexual abuse to know there is hope.

“What’s going to happen is now I have to learn and cope with the trauma and channel my frustration and fears into something better. I can now see others and help them if I see warning signs.”

After his 50 year prison sentence, Rosa will spend another 25 years on post release supervision and must register as a sex offender.

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