My name is Alexander Savage. I’m currently 21 years old; I was 19 when I caught my charges and sentenced when I was 20 years old. I was a college student at Indiana University of PA. I was once married to a beautiful wife and I have a great supportive family. I committed my crimes on three occasions around the time of Winter 2013, to Spring 2014ish; I don’t have an exact date[s]. I was charged at my first docket with Sexual Assault, and Indecent Assault on my second docket. They were against my brother and sister; they were 11 at the time. I was suicidal because of the guilt [for what] I had done, so I went to the hospital because I had overdosed trying to end my life. I had a psych eval and then the psych reported the incidents. In July 2014, I was arrested and charged with my crimes of Sexual and Indecent Assault. (I turned myself in to avoid any further problems. It was me who reported the crimes and, when Detective McKool, who was my interrogating and assigned officer to my case, told me I had the choice. I did what I was told.) In my interrogation with Detective McKool and his partner, I was coerced into signing my Miranda Rights. I had my wife with me, waiting downstairs. I asked for a lawyer. They asked me if I had one. I didn’t know, at the time. I didn’t think I did. Me, being raised to believe the police were here to help me, I kindly asked for one. But since I didn’t know who to call, and I respectfully left my cellphone in the car, I was afraid I was going to be there a long time. I didn’t want to keep my wife waiting, and with no knowledge of the system at the time, I signed my rights. Big. Mistake. They coerced my statement, saying I raped my sister. This was not true. The future examination showed she had no sexual intercourse with me, or anyone, and results showed no sign of abuse to both my siblings. This was a case of hearsay. But because I confessed and because my brother and sister were interrogated after me, the police coerced them to tell them what they wanted to hear, not the truth. I won’t lie, I did indecently assault them. Once on my brother, a couple times on my sister. However the police and media made me out to be a monster. In fact, though I did do a horrible thing, I was also a once acclaimed student, actor, singer, dancer, and instrumentalist, who donated so much time and money to my high school, McKeesport Area High, who partook in marching band, choirs, speech, hell, even the Pittsburgh Symphony once. In my first year of college, I was .02 GPA points away from making the Dean’s list.
Not once did I threat, or keep them ‘hostage’ to my actions. For the whole time, I continued to, and still have the support of my family, wife, in-laws, and even my brother and sister. Yes, the victims were in support of my treatment, and, in the sentencing memorandum pack, they each included “I forgive Alex for what he has done. I miss when he would come over and we would all have a good time. I miss when we can’t see each other and me and Alex play games. Also I would like us all to see one of my baseball games.” My sister wrote in similar, “I’m Alex’s little sister. I can’t wait for summer. I’m and forgive him. I miss when he came over and we went to the campground and told jokes. I don’t want Alex to go to jail . . . Please don’t break my little heart and send him to jail . . . I don’t want to see him in jail EVER. Please have a change of heart and not send him to jail . . .” They were both 11 at the time these letters were written. I later received letters in my current attempt for clemency to Gov. Wolf and future appeals. My brother wrote, “I miss Alex very much and would really like for him to be out soon. I want him to recognize me before I get to much older. I would like my family and Kayla [My wife] to all be able to go see a Pirate’s game soon someday.” My sister writes, “I’m writing because I hope you can help Alex get out of jail soon. I don’t want us to keep growing apart. I wish I could see him on my B-day or Christmas. If you had a family member you couldn’t see or have home for a long time wouldn’t you be sad to? I forgive him and miss him and I just want him home. Please listen.” Listen indeed. When I received these letters I was heart broken yet filled with love and joy on how they feel. My brother and sister were evaluated and there is no signs of PTSD or any other mental illnesses or anything that would have traumatized them, along with the whole family. I was sentenced at Docket 1 to 5-10 years, second docket I was sentenced 2 ½-5 years run consecutively. My Judge was Donna Jo McDaniels. My brother and sister were NEVER coerced to say any of this. This all came from a simple question. “What do you want them to do about Alex and how do you feel?”
Aside from these letters, I have received more for the sentencing memorandum, as well as new letters for my clemency file. My case is under currently appeal of the Superior Courts of Allegheny County. An oral argument is scheduled for tomorrow, Sept. 20, 2016. Our ground is ‘abusive discretion’ at sentencing. Judge McDaniels claims that I never received sex therapy treatment until AFTER I was arrested. Documented reports show I was in Indiana Community Treatment the day after I was released from the hospital from my suicide attempt. After my arrest, I switched treatment to Dr. Allan Pass, director of the national behavioral science and consultants. From treatment, I have accepted guilt and consulted it with one another, identified risk factors, relapse signs, relapse prevention, victim empathy, and a multitude of other accomplishments. I was to start maintenance phase of treatment, but he postponed it until after sentencing. The judge also claims that the crimes must be “Absolutely horrendous” even though the two victims never testified, and their letters speak for themselves of love and support they have for me in continuing treatment with Dr. Pass. (I also pled guilty to avoid my family and siblings taking the stand and possibly traumatizing them in court.) Despite the evidence and support and the support of the victims who continue to thrive in life, I was sentenced harshly. In Dr. Pass’ report, he scored me as a low risk re-offender on one test. On another, I did score a Moderate-High risk of relapse, however, with the data included, the probable chance of re-offending is 8.7% I would offend in the next 5 years. He even suggested I stay in treatment because I have “Consistently impressed on [as?] one who is motivated to continue, and benefit. Mr. Savage expresses sincere remorse for his actions and the possible damage it could have on his siblings.” Dr. Pass even recommended that I be on probation, which the judge acknowledged but rejected due to blind leading. I am a first time offender, never had anything more than a speeding ticket. If worse comes to worse, I’ll be 35 on my max date, my brother and sister will be 26 and more than likely finishing college. I will miss out on all their birthdays, Christmas, my all time favorite holiday I go nuts for. I will also my little sister’s date to prom, my brother’s prom date, their concerts (They play in band and strings. My brother plays cello (my personal instrument), drums, while my sister plays violin.) and much more. All three of us used to play our instrument together, I’ve actually taught them a good number of times privately for better performance. We are a very close knit family. The judges will argue, along with the DA, but my brother and sister love me, they miss me, and all they want is for me to come home. I love them, I miss them, and I would do anything to see them, but I can’t see them, I can’t talk to them, I can’t write them, I have no contact with them whatsoever.
The Commonwealth argues that my parents are not good parents, even though they know what is best and we are still close together. The state nit picks to prove their superiority. My parents are the greatest and they raised me right. I just made a choice against what they taught me. My family and I need to heal together, incarceration damages that progress, along with the treatment I’ve undergone already in the community by a well recognized psychologist that is acclaimed for his treatment program.
I admit my guilt. Was it wrong? Yes. Did I deserve this much time? No. According to my paperwork, the average sentence for me should have been 3-6 years. I’ve lost so much time already. I’ve lost my wife. She ended up cheating on me for a long time while I’m incarcerated and finally told me. We no [longer] talk. She was my backbone, my rock and support, but I was betrayed. It broke me apart and to this day, I’m still a broken mess with no way to heal until I go home. I continue to lose my family, my brother and sister, all thanks to a bad choice, and the commonwealth’s need to incarcerate. Relationships are destroyed by the crime, but also by the incarceration, which denies the chance of true healing. I would do anything to see them all again at our traditional Christmas gathering, but by the time I get out, my grandparents will be close to death. My cousins, brother and sister will be all grown up, and the rest of my family will be elderly to the point things just won’t be the same. Whoever has ears, listen. Listen to me, take something away from what I’m saying. Don’t take your family for granted. Family, no matter what, they will always be your mother and father. If you grew up in a bad home, they may not like you, but you’re their son/daughter and they will always love you. Family is sacred, never ever waste one minute of it.
Don’t take your spouse/love for granted. My wife and I always argued. I was wrong at times, and so was she. Life was chaotic and stressful. I will always be unforgiving of myself what I did the day before I was sentenced. My wife and I exploded into a huge argument for reasons that don’t even matter anymore. Because of that, and what I’ve done, she’s gone. Darling, if you are reading this, I’m sorry I couldn’t be the prince you wanted me to be. But times change, I’ve changed, and if you never see it, or even see me again, know that I’ve changed my life for the better. Love is eternal. Marriage is sacred. Folks, love your spouse and show it EVERYDAY; no matter if you’re angry, sad, or whatever. Be there for one another, through good and bad. Love is patient, love is kind, see 1St Corinthians Ch. 13, known as the Love chapter.
If you have siblings, remember this. When mom and dad are gone, and when all your friends have left you, your brother and sister will be there. Always teach them right from wrong. Love them. Protect them. Don’t ever let them go. If you are older, guard and watch over them with love. If you are younger and have an older sibling, do the same. Keep them in line, love them, be respectful, and never toss them out of your life.
I’ve lost all my friends, and my wife included. People will come and go. Whether you’ve been incarcerated, or if fate doesn’t allow it, they will leave you one day. You might feel all alone, and you may have no one to turn to. But in the end of the day, family is all that we got. I implore the state to give me a chance to heal with my family and reunite us together. I need them more then they need me. I hope things will be set right. My family is all that I got, bring me home where my heart is.
Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Superior Court questions whether Common Pleas judge is over-punishing sex offenders