ATHOL, Mass. (WWLP) - An Athol man was convicted Monday in Franklin Superior Court on two counts of forcible rape of a 7-year-old child.
According to the Northwestern District Attorney's office , 24-year-old Joshua Matthews was charged with sexually abusing a 7-year-old foster child who was living in his family home. The abuse spanned over two years.
The judge convicted Matthews to 7 to 10 years in state prison, followed by 10 years of probation and will have to wear a GPS tracking device.
The victim, now 14, testified about the abuse he suffered while living in the home.
"On behalf of the victim, his family, and the community, we are pleased today to see the defendant sentenced in accordance with his horrific crimes," said Assistant District Attorney Carrie Russell, who prosecuted the case.
The DA's office said Russell had recommended a 15-20 year sentence. While the defense requested incarceration in a House of Corrections and a probationary term.
"We are hopeful that today's sentencing can bring some measure of closure to the young victim as he continues on his pathway to healing," Russell said.