A West Richland man was sentenced to 27 years to life Friday after his conviction in December for giving drugs to a girl and forcing her to have sex with him over a period of years.
Benton County prosecutors asked for an enhanced sentence of 342 months for Kevin John Hubbard, 39, citing his sexual motivation for plying his young victim with LSD and marijuana.
The defense asked for a standard sentence of about 23 years, which was also the recommendation in a state Department of Corrections assessment.
Judge Vic Vanderschoor passed down a 27-year sentence and signed an order preventing Hubbard from having any contact with the victim for the rest of her life.
The Tri-City Herald is not identifying the victim, a minor, and is not reporting details of the case that could identify her.
In 2015, she sought help at Kadlec Regional Medical Center, which contacted West Richland police. She was only 16 at the time and said she had been raped in Benton City on Aug. 2, 2015.
She told investigators the abuse began when she was a child and escalated from touching to sexual intercourse when she was 12. She said Hubbard would give her marijuana and LSD to facilitate sex and compelled her to begin using birth control.
He was charged in Benton County Superior Court with one count each of second- and third-degree child rape, second-degree child molestation and three counts of distributing a controlled substance to a person under 18.
The sex crimes include aggravating circumstances that Hubbard enjoyed a position of trust with his victim. The drug distribution charges carried allegations of sexual motivation.
A jury convicted Hubbard of four counts, including second-degree rape of a child, the most serious offense. He received separate sentences for the other three charges, which will be served concurrently.
The child rape conviction carries a life sentence with the possibility of review. That means Hubbard will be eligible to petition for a review after 27 years.
He indicated during Friday’s sentencing hearing that he will appeal the convictions and sentence.
Neither the victim nor her mother were in court Friday, though one juror was present.
Prosecutor Anita Petra said the teen is ready to put the case behind her now.
“This case has affected her and will continue to affect her for the rest of her life,” she said.
Hubbard has a prior criminal history that includes writing bad checks and possession of drugs, according to the sentencing report. He has served two prior prison sentences.
Hubbard briefly addressed the court to apologize to the state, the county, the family and his victim. He pledged to take advantage of sex offender treatment while in prison.