Cop Accused of Sexual Abuse: Was He Railroaded?


Another critical point of concern for the defense was Ray's son Matt's denial of abuse for over eight months until he was told he would have to take a polygraph, which he said scared him.

"When he does come up with a story of being abused, he indicates it wasn't just his father, but that there were other police officers that abused him -- just this fantastic, bizarre story," Camiel said.

And as for allegations that Ray abused his step-son in his motel room, Camiel and Henderson raised some questions about the boy's mother -- Ray's second wife -- Shirley Hansen. Why, after they were separated, would she leave her son alone with Ray, who by then had been charged with raping his own kids?

"One of the explanations is that it was a set-up," Camiel said. "Can I prove that? No. But it sure looks like it."

After a little digging by Camiel and Henderson, the defense believed they found a reason why Shirley would want to set-up Ray; evidence pointed to the fact that Shirley was having an affair with the supervising detective on the case, Sergeant Michael Davidson.

"The motive for going after Ray is clear to me -- it was another police officer's desire for his wife [Shirley]," said Henderson.

Shirley Spencer and Sergeant Davidson refused to speak to "20/20."

Current Clark County Senior Deputy Prosecutor, John Fairgrieve, spoke about the case with ABC News and addressed allegations of an affair.

"Whether it had any impact on the actual investigation itself, there's a question," he said, "But regardless, it was a poor decision by Sergeant Davidson to do that."

But the bombshells kept coming -- medical exams of Katie Spencer and Ray's stepson, Little Matt, were uncovered a decade later, after sitting in a file with Clark County investigators. The results rocked the case: no physical evidence of sexual abuse.

"These were the most graphic, violent, severe allegations. It's exactly the kind of abuse that you would expect would leave physical injury," Camiel noted.

After Nearly 20 Years and a Long-Shot Appeal, Ray Wins Freedom

Despite the discoveries, Ray's defense team struck out on appeals. In the fall of 2003, with all other legal avenues exhausted, the defense made a long-shot appeal to Washington Governor Gary Locke to commute Ray's sentence.

More than a year later, in December 2004, Ray's sentence was commuted by Locke. At the time, he had served the longest sentence for a sex crime in Washington State -- almost 20 years.

Locke's decision was so surprising that it caught the attention of local newspaper reporters, Stephanie Rice and Ken Olsen of The Columbian.

"Governor Locke is a very cautious man. For him to commute this sort of sentence, meant there was something really rotten at the heart of this case," Olsen told "20/20."

Olsen made several calls to Matt Spencer following Ray's release. Initially Matt Spencer hung up, but he eventually spoke to Olsen on the phone, and told him that he lived in agony over the allegations for years.

After Olsen's call, over several months, Matt decided he could no longer live with a burden that had haunted him for decades.

"We had been told that we had suppressed it, we were blacking everything out. And I finally realized, I am not blocking anything out. I remember everything else," Matt explained. "I realized, I need to make this right."

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