A Fresno, California, man was sentenced to 1,503 years in prison for repeatedly raping his daughter over a four-year period, the Fresno Bee reports.
In September, the 41-year-old man, who BuzzFeed News is choosing not to name to protect the victim’s identity, was convicted at trial on 186 counts of felony sexual assault, including more than a dozen counts of raping a minor.
On Friday, before handing down what is the longest known sentence in the history of Fresno Superior Court, Judge Edward Sarkisian Jr. called the man “a serious danger to society” who blamed his daughter for his crimes, according to the Bee.
The 1,503-year sentence, which was requested by the prosecutors, is a stark contrast to a recent case that received national media attention where a Montana man admitted to raping his 12-year-old daughter and received a sentence of 60 days in jail. In that case, prosecutors also said the man “repeatedly” raped his daughter and were seeking a 100-year prison sentence.
After pleading guilty, the Montana man received a 30-year suspended sentence where he would avoid prison altogether. Instead, he’ll spend just 43 days in jail due to 17 days of credit for time served.
In Montana, the court is allowed to sentence a sex offender to less than the 25 years that the sentencing guidelines demand in a rape case if a judge determines that the offender would be better served by other rehabilitation efforts.
The Fresno man was offered multiple plea agreements where he could have agreed to a deal where he’d be sentenced to as few as 13 years in jail, but he chose to go to trial instead, the Bee reported.
The man did not testify in his own defense, but in a letter to the judge he claimed that he did not receive a fair trial and that his daughter lied and her testimony should be taken as “hearsay.”
At trial, the prosecution presented evidence that the man raped his daughter two to three times a week from May 2009 to May 2013. She was 16 years old when the abuse began. At one point, the girl became pregnant and the defendant paid for her to have an abortion, the Bee reported.
Their case included a chilling detail where after the daughter moved to new home in order to get away from her father, he would drive by her new home and leave her voicemails with love songs playing. The man was eventually arrested in 2013 after his daughter called the Fresno police to report the abuse.
The prosecution said that the woman was first abused by a family friend, after which her father turned her into “a piece of property,” prosecutors said.
The man’s daughter, now 23, spoke at Friday’s sentencing. “When my father abused me, I was young. I had no power, no voice. I was defenseless,” she told the judge.
Judge Sarkisian told the girl she is “a courageous young woman.”
Along with the girl’s testimony at trial, prosecutors showed the jury entries from her journal chronicling the abuse.
Before delivering his sentence, Sarkisian read off the dates of the abuse, which included Christmas and other holidays.
Michael Hayes is a senior reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.
Contact Mike Hayes at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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