Sexual abuse victim in Watervliet case speaks out

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WATERVLIET — Former Watervliet firefighter Edward Rolfe was sentenced to 30 days in jail and six years probation for sexual abuse and forcible touching.

It’s been a long ordeal for his victim– four years– but she says it was important to speak up and stay the course.

“I will finally feel safe today. I feel like I finally got justice after four years.”

The woman, whose name we are not using, has been praised for her courage and resilience.

She was the Uber driver who was sexually abused by Rolfe in 2019.

“I finally feel like this day is coming and after four years of him being free and not held accountable, today is a better day for everybody.”

She was there Tuesday as Rolfe was sentenced by Judge Thomas Lamb in Watervliet City Court.

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Rolfe was terminated as a Watervliet firefighter upon conviction.

He had been suspended with pay for almost four years, as the trial was postponed.

His victim says it’s been a nightmare. She got emotional as she talked about why she kept going, and setting an example for her son.

“I had a lot of moments, but I didn’t want to give up for him. I wanted to show him that if I get justice, in the future, he will learn the same way.”

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She says she persevered for herself, but also for others. She hopes to inspire other victims to speak up and fight.

“Do what they have to do, even if it’s painful. You have to do what’s the right thing. You have to continue, you have to fight for yourself and don’t let anybody treat you like this.”

“Don’t ever let anybody insult you, harass you or bully you, none of that. Don’t let anyone stop you from getting justice for yourself.”