Mother of teenage girl involved in Feb. 16 AMBER Alert speaks out

Local News

(WIVB)– The mother of the teenaged girl involved in the February 16 Amber Alert is speaking out about the man accused of raping her daughter.

Cathleen, the mother of the victim said, “I expect them to keep him away forever. As long as they can.”

Cathleen from North Tonawanda says she’s furious that Michael Mesko was let out of jail one week after being charged with raping her 17-year-old daughter. She says he showed up at their home the day he was released last week.

“And he says I am here to apologize for all the inconvenience. I said ‘who are you’ and he tells me and I said ‘you need to go. You have an order of protection. I said you are a sick son of a pup, and he ran. He was stalking us. So the police proceeded to have 24-hour surveillance around the house.”

Cathleen, Mother of the Victim

The Niagara County District Attorney’s Office explains that they had asked for $10,000 bail to be placed on Mesko.

Judge Shawn Nickerson set bail at only $1,000. So the DA, assuming Mesko would post that low bail anyway, opted not to proceed with a preliminary hearing to spare the victim from cross-examination months before an actual trial.

“We should have been involved so we could have our say to protect my daughter and other children from this predator,” Cathleen said.

On Monday night, five days after Mesko’s release, the victim’s mother said “She went to meet up with a friend at Walmart and he grabbed her.”

Mesko and the girl were found at a truck stop in Pennsylvania. Federal authorities are now involved and Cathleen’s daughter is stable but is still being evaluated at a Pennsylvania hospital.

Cathleen continued, “She is still in and out. I talked to her this morning on the phone. She was all groggy. Her heart rate has been going up and they can’t get it to go down. She will never be the same 17-year-old girl that I know.”

George Richert is an award-winning reporter who first joined the News 4 team in 1998, later returning in 2018. See more of his work here.

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