Crime

This Kennewick man met teen girls at his church. Now he faces jail time for raping them

Kennewick man changes plea to guilty to three counts of third-degree rape of a child

Oscar Perez pleads guilty at Benton County Superior Court on three counts of third-degree rape of a child.
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Oscar Perez pleads guilty at Benton County Superior Court on three counts of third-degree rape of a child.

A 25-year-old man admitted sexually assaulting three young teen girls he met through his Kennewick church.

Oscar A. Perez was taken into custody Thursday after entering guilty pleas in Benton County Superior Court to three counts of third-degree rape of a child.

A fourth rape charge for a fourth victim was dismissed as part of the plea agreement, along with a charge of second-degree possessing depictions of a minor engaged in sexually explicit conduct.

Perez met the girls in 2016 and 2017 through Casa de Restauracion, a Spanish-speaking church where his father was pastor, according to prosecutors.

One of the girls told family members in the summer of 2017 that she’d had sex with Perez, court documents said.

Went to hotel several times

After police were called, the girl further disclosed that she had gone to a Kennewick hotel with Perez on several occasions. Perez once showed her videos he had made while having sex with two other girls, both of whom the victim recognized, documents said.

Perez did not have any felony history before pleading guilty Thursday.

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Oscar Perez pleads guilty in Benton County Superior Court in Kennewick on Thursday to three charges of rape of a minor in Benton County Superior Court in Kennewick. Noelle Haro-Gomez Tri-City Herald

Third-degree child rape carries a standard sentencing range of three years and 10 months to five years.

However, the plea agreement states that both prosecutors and the defense will recommend a reduced sentence of two years in prison, to be followed by three years on community supervision.

Perez got emotional

Perez also will have to get a sex offender evaluation and follow all treatment recommendations, the agreement states.

Sentencing is set for July 11.

Defense attorney Megan Whitmire said her client’s family was “very upset” because they were not aware Perez would be locked up immediately without bail after admitting the sex crimes.

Perez started to get emotional looking at his relatives as he was handcuffed and eventually led out of the courtroom.

Kristin M. Kraemer covers the judicial system and crime issues for the Tri-City Herald. She has been a journalist for more than 20 years in Washington and California.
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