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{September 11, 2008}   Case of underage stripper upsets stepfather

The stepfather of a 14-year-old girl who worked at a Lexington strip club says he’s disappointed that a grand jury dismissed the charge against the club owner.

Camelot West manager Ronald M. Shields, 51, was charged in March with using a minor younger than 16 in a sexual performance. He was accused of giving the girl a job as a dancer in the strip club, court records say. A Fayette County grand jury dismissed the charge last month.

“She could have come up missing, dead or anything,” Terry Comley said on Tuesday. “I’m just really unhappy with the system.”

The girl worked for about two days at Camelot West on Alexandria Drive until she was caught by her mother, Kimberly Comley, and stepfather on March 11. Another relative told the parents where to find the girl.

Kimberly Comley called police after she entered the club and saw her daughter sitting at a table in a dance outfit.

Police have said the identification card the girl used to get the job did not resemble her at all. But Shields contended that the photo on the ID card looked like the girl, and she was able to give the birth date on the card after club employees took it from her.

Shields could not be reached for comment Tuesday afternoon.

The girl’s paternal aunt, Tina Hobbs, 33, who was charged with third-degree unlawful transaction with a minor, a misdemeanor, pleaded guilty in May and was sentenced to 60 days in jail.

The same charge against Hobbs’ boyfriend, Jimmy Ray Kiger, 32, was dismissed in July.

Kiger and Hobbs were accused of transporting the girl to and from the club. Court records also say that Hobbs admitted to driving her niece to Camelot West and receiving cash from her after the girl worked at the club.

“Jimmy didn’t really know what was going on,” Kiger’s lawyer, Sally Wasielewski, said Tuesday. “He had no participation in it.”

Wasielewski said Kiger was just “in the wrong place at the wrong time.”

The girl’s parents claim that Hobbs and Kiger gave their daughter drugs, and that she wasn’t herself when she started dancing at the club. They said Tuesday that Kiger also should have been found guilty.

“As far as I know, it’s over and done with,” Terry Comley said. “And I don’t like that.”

He said his stepdaughter has been placed in a group home near Ashland for truancy since the club incident. She’ll stay in the program for a year.

“She is full of guilt, shame, and she thinks everybody is just going to look at her bad when she gets out,” he said.

Terry Comley said he thought it was important for the public to know about what he considers an unfair outcome in the case.

“He didn’t even get a slap on the hand; he didn’t get nothing,” he said of Shields, the club owner.

Source

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