A jury took about two hours to convict a 54-year-old man of raping a grade-school girl for six years.
The guilty verdicts against Aristides Guevara were returned Friday by a Benton County Superior Court jury.
He was convicted of two counts of first-degree rape of child and one count of first-degree child molestation.
The jury also found two aggravating factors on each charge: that the crime was part of an ongoing pattern of sexual abuse, and that Guevara used his position of trust to get close to the girl.
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Guevara, of Kennewick, is being held in the Benton County jail without bail. Sentencing tentatively is set for July 21.
Court documents show that the sexual abuse started in January 2009 and last occurred in late 2014 or January 2015.
The girl disclosed to law enforcement that Guevara initially would touch her under her clothes. When she was in late elementary school, it escalated to rape.
On occasion, Guevara reportedly used the excuse that he needed the girl to translate for him while running errands. Once those were done, he would take her back to his own home and sexually assault her, documents said.
Guevara also took the girl with him to work in 2014 and raped her in his van, court documents said.
The victim said she never disclosed the abuse because Guevera claimed he would hurt a relative of the girl if she told anyone.
Then in early 2016, the girl was at a youth group meeting when she privately told a leader about the abuse. The leader had the girl tell her family, then the police were called, documents said.
Guevara denied the allegations at trial.
“(The girl) was one of the best witnesses I’ve ever had at trial,” Deputy Prosecutor Anita Petra told the Herald. “I was very happy to have justice for this family.”
Guevara is facing between 13 1/2 to 18 years in prison, though Petra said she will ask for more time based on the aggravating circumstances.
The ordered sentence will be a mandatory minimum term since Guevera could spend the rest of his life in prison for the sex crimes. It will be up to a state board to determine his eventual release.