Man gets ten years in prison for sex as­sault of dis­abled

The Maui News - - TODAY’S PEOPLE - Staff Writer By LILA FUJIMOTO

WAILUKU — For sex­u­ally as­sault­ing a men­tally dis­abled woman while filling in as her home care worker, a Waiehu man was sentenced Wed­nes­day to a 10-year prison term.

“You vi­o­lated her sanc­tity. You trau­ma­tized her. You gave her night­mares,” 2nd Cir­cuit Judge Rhonda Loo said in sen­tenc­ing Jonathan De­los San­tos. “Hard work­ers and good work­ers some­times com­mit hor­ri­ble crimes. And this was a hor­ri­ble crime.

“As a spe­cial needs girl, as an autis­tic girl, she de­served bet­ter. She did not de­serve to be raped on the floor of her own bed­room.”

De­los San­tos, 35, had pleaded no con­test to sec­ond-de­gree sex­ual as­sault of the 26-yearold woman on March 19, 2016.

That af­ter­noon, when her reg­u­lar care worker wasn’t avail­able, De­los San­tos was hired to go to the woman’s home in Wailuku to help her, the woman’s mother said in court Wed­nes­day. She said her daugh­ter didn’t want to have a male care worker, but she thought it would be OK for one day.

De­los San­tos ar­rived at about 4 p.m. and was alone with the woman for an hour be­fore an­other fam­ily mem­ber ar­rived home, the mother said.

She said her daugh­ter still suf­fers from night­mares be­cause of what hap­pened.

“My daugh­ter is an adult, but with a very young per­son in­side,” she said, speak­ing through a Man­darin in­ter­preter. “I have to stand up and tell ev­ery­body. He has to get pun­ished so no one will get harmed again.”

De­los San­tos, who has been jailed since his ar­rest in Septem­ber 2016, had asked to be re­leased and placed on pro­ba­tion.

His fa­ther and brother also asked that De­los San­tos be al­lowed to re­turn home to help the fam­ily, in­clud­ing his two chil­dren.

“It’s clear Jonathan did not un­der­stand specif­i­cally what he was deal­ing with at the time of the event,” said de­fense at­tor­ney David Wilt­sie. “He im­me­di­ately re­al­ized he had mis­read the cir­cum­stances. He was deal­ing with some­body who couldn’t give con­sent.”

Wilt­sie said De­los San­tos served in the Navy as a medic for eight years from 1999 to 2007.

“He spent time in Afghanistan and Iraq on the front lines deal­ing with peo­ple who were badly in­jured in

wartime cir­cum­stances,” Wilt­sie said.

“This is not a run-of-the-mill

type case,” he said. “Jonathan truly is some­body who made a se­ri­ous mis­take but im­me­di­ately owned up to it.”

Deputy Pros­e­cu­tor Kristin Coc­caro said that De­los San­tos

had the woman’s care plan and “knew the abil­i­ties of this per­son be­fore walk­ing in.”

“It’s a case of the strong prey­ing on the weak,” she said in ar­gu­ing for the 10-year prison term. “It’s a case of an abuse of power of the worst kind.

“He was there to help her. But he didn’t help her. He as­sessed the sit­u­a­tion very quickly and he used her for what he

wanted to use her for.

“She knew enough to say no. But she did not have the skills to get out of the sit­u­a­tion.”

Af­ter rap­ing the woman, De­los San­tos asked her to sign his timesheet so he could get paid, Judge Loo said.

Af­ter­ward, the woman spent hours re­peat­ing “this painful, em­bar­rass­ing story” to nurses, doc­tors and de­tec­tives, Loo

said. She said po­lice found DNA matched to De­los San­tos on un­der­wear and the car­pet of the woman’s bed­room.

Not­ing that the woman’s mother said she didn’t want to see De­los San­tos trau­ma­tize an­other per­son again, Loo said: “At the very least, we can try and do that for the next 10 years.”

Lila Fujimoto can be reached at lfu­ji­

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