A convicted rapist was adamant Friday that he never touched a pre-teen girl, saying he thought the Benton County jury was convinced by the victim's claims and not the evidence.
Allen Robert Trevino, 40, told a judge that he has no remorse because he did nothing wrong.
But Judge Vic VanderSchoor said the guilty verdicts justify a minimum sentence of 14 years with the potential for Trevino to spend the rest of his life in prison.
"Mr. Trevino has every right in the world to still proclaim his innocence. I have no problem in that, and my sentence has nothing to do with whether he accepts responsibility," VanderSchoor explained. "But the jury has found unanimous verdicts -- 12 out of 12 -- that Mr. Trevino committed these crimes" and the aggravating circumstances.
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VanderSchoor granted the prosecution's request for a sentence above the standard range of from nine years and three months to 12 years and three months.
However, he did not go as high as Deputy Prosecutor Anita Petra sought -- almost 16 years.
Once Trevino is done serving the mandatory minimum sentence, it will be up to the state's Indeterminate Sentence Review Board to decide if he is ready to be released. The decision often is based on whether the offender completed any treatment programs in prison and accepted responsibility for their crime.
A Benton County Superior Court jury in December convicted Trevino of first-degree rape of a child with the aggravating factor that he used his position of trust with the victim to commit the crime.
The Portland man also was convicted of communication with a minor for immoral purposes, a misdemeanor.
The victim came forward in December 2010 to protect other young girls she thought may be vulnerable around Trevino. She reported it to Richland police.
She is not named under a Herald policy not to identify people who report being sexually assaulted.
The victim said she remembers it began with Trevino reading pornography to her while she was in grade school and eventually escalated to what she described as molestation, court documents state.
The sexual abuse lasted about three years, documents state.
The girl's mother confronted Trevino at one point, and he allegedly took off once police were called. The Benton County case was filed in February 2011, and Trevino was arrested a month later by U.S. marshals in Portland.
The victim attended Friday's hearing along with her mother and grandmother. The bailiff had to tell Trevino to face the judge after he was caught turned around in his chair and staring at the victim.
Trevino told a corrections official for his presentencing report that he believes the charges were brought against him because he confronted the girl and her boyfriend about taking his medical marijuana. He claims there was a verbal confrontation and two weeks later he was accused of the rapes.
Trevino said Friday that he has been "a good person" his whole life, and was good to the victim and her family. He said he became a caregiver for a few people in Oregon after losing his truck-driving job when the charges were filed.
"I have no remorse against anybody in this, and I just wish to be able to take care of my family. I still claim my innocence, and I don't see how a life sentence is justified in something like this," he said. "... I'm just asking for some leniency from the court."
Trevino said he understands the jury verdicts and will do his time while he appeals the convictions.
Trevino's criminal history includes felony convictions in 1999 for two counts of manufacturing and delivering marijuana in Oregon and misdemeanors for recklessly endangering, third-degree escape and resisting arrest.
Attorney Peyman Younesi said that from the first day he represented Trevino, the man has insisted he was accused of something he had not done and no one was listening to his side of the story.
"He's been around plenty of children who adore him," Younesi told the court.
Trevino was aware of the "mammoth amount of time he was facing" and could have made a deal with prosecutors, instead of risking an unpredictable jury trial, Younesi said. But his client stepped up with his "solid contention" that he was innocent.
The victim's grandmother tearfully addressed the judge Friday, saying Trevino had been trusted by the family and ended up doing "the worst possible thing" he could have done.
"That took away her childhood. This made her suffer," the grandmother said. "I know he doesn't feel that, he really doesn't -- he has no remorse -- but I'm just asking you because we have to live with this every day of our lives. Just put him away. Don't ever let him do this to anybody else's child."
The victim opted not to talk before the court but submitted a letter as part of Trevino's presentencing report done by the state Department of Corrections.
The victim said that after being sexually assaulted, she struggled in school and now cannot have a physical attraction to any man who looks like Trevino.
She added that "after keeping such a big secret in for so long," she has difficulty sharing her feelings or talking with those close to her and is cautious about her infant daughter's safety around other men.
"Being molested has affected my life. But as a strong woman and mother, I will grow and learn and no longer let this affect me," she wrote in the letter. "I just want this to never happen to anyone."