Man receives life sentence for rape
Awaits trial for another rape case
A La Plata man was sentenced to life imprisonment Thursday afternoon in Charles County Circuit Court for raping an 11-year-old girl.
Jaime Antonio Rivera, 27, was sentenced to life plus 25 years in prison, convicted of rape and child sexual abuse following three days of trial in January. Assistant state’s attorneys Sarah Freeman and Jared Albert met their burden of proof through DNA evidence and witness testimony from the victim and her 8-year-old sister, who said Rivera made her sit on the top bunk while the bed shook for 30 to 50 minutes.
In Rivera’s charging documents, a detective noted that Rivera told police he was not a U.S. citizen.
The victim first repor ted
the incident to police on June 10, 2016, after talking to a social worker at school a few days after Rivera raped her, and made disclosures to a Charles County Sheriff’s Office detective before a sexual assault nurse examination was conducted, court proceedings showed. A search warrant was obtained and detectives recovered clothing the victim had worn the night of the rape, as well as a DNA sample from the suspect. It was later determined that Rivera’s DNA sample matched the DNA found from underwear the victim said she had been wearing.
On the night of the incident, June 4, 2016, the victim said she had been asleep when she was woken up around 2 a.m. by Rivera, who demanded to have sex with her.
“He told me that if I didn’t, he was going to get his knife,” the victim testified. When she said no, he left the room and came back with a knife, and she then complied. “I just laid there” and didn’t say anything, she testified. “… I was scared, and I was crying.”
On Thursday, Judge Erik Nyce, a visiting judge who presided over the trial, found that a departure from sentencing guidelines was warranted given the heinous nature of the offense.
“I do find that he is a violent sexual predator,” the judge said. “… The level of harm was excessive,” noting the impact the crime had on the victim and also her younger sister.
“[She listened to her sister] undergo the most heinous abuse that could be possible,” Nyce said. “Our hearts pray for you.”
The judge then handed down his sentence, life plus 25 years in prison.
Rivera is scheduled to stand trial again on April 24 for his alleged involvement in a gang rape of a woman in 2010. The DNA sample collected during the investigation reportedly linked him as one of four men who took turns sexually assaulting a woman at a Waldorf house before she was able to escape.