A Modesto man accused of repeatedly raping a 10-year-old girl pleaded guilty to all charges against him in exchange for a mitigated prison sentence, the District Attorney’s Office announced Monday.
“There are no mitigating circumstances in this case. There is an overwhelming amount of aggravating factors here,” Deputy District Attorney Annette Rees said in a news release. “This defendant does not deserve a mitigated sentence for raping a 10-year-old.”
Despite prosecutors’ objections, Judge Richard Cordova offered a sentence of at least 42 years to life in prison to Jesus Mario Villarreal, 37, before jury selection was scheduled to start last week.
He faced a maximum sentence of 54 years to life in prison for the charges to which he pleaded guilty: Two felony counts of aggravated sexual assault on a child, one felony count of continuous sexual assault of a child under the age of 14, four felony counts of penetration by a foreign object on a child under 14, one felony count of oral copulation on a child under the age of 14 and one misdemeanor count of possession of child pornography.
The crimes occurred from September 2004 through May 2005.
According to the District Attorney’s Office, Villarreal’s victim said he would throw a blanket over her face when he threatened her, told her to “shut up,” and videotaped himself sexually assaulting her.
A search of Villarreal’s car and apartment uncovered a laptop computer and camera, which were seized and forensically examined. Investigators recovered photos and video clips of the defendant’s acts upon the victim.
In April 2007, Villarreal, who was out of custody on $500,000 bail, failed to show for one of his court dates.
District attorney’s Investigator Kirk Bunch tracked Villarreal to Arizona via his recently purchased cellphone. Villarreal was renting a room under the name Cesar Perez.
“A trusted adult, a vulnerable 10-year-old victim, repeated sexual assaults, and a man who fled from the court to escape prosecution,” Rees said in the release. “This is a depraved individual who does not deserve any mercy from this court.”
A sentencing hearing is scheduled for Dec. 16.