Tri-Cities mental health aide sentenced to life in prison for raping a patient
KENNEWICK, Wash. — Following an in-depth trial, one former aide at a Tri-Cities area mental health facility has been sentenced to life in prison for the second-degree rape of a patient under his care.
According to the Benton County Prosecutor’s Office, evidence confirmed in court showed that Arthur De Victoria used his position of power to force a female victim into sexual acts. The woman was involuntarily committed to the Tri-Cities area facility for treatment under his direct supervision.
Court documents show that De Victoria forced the victim to perform oral sex on two separate occasions and recorded both acts on his cell phone.
Following his minimum sentence of 90 months (seven and a half years) in prison, an Indeterminant Sentence Review Board will decide whether De Victoria should be released. If freed, he will spend the rest of his life as a registered sex offender under Department of Corrections supervision.
In court proceedings, a Criminal Defense Attorney argued that De Victoria should receive a sentence below the standard range because the victim was a “willing participant” in the sexual acts. The attorney furthered these claims by suggesting that the victim initiated sexual contact and even seduced the defendant.
However, a Deputy Prosecutor argued that these arguments were contrary to the law on rape since De Victora abused his position of power to force the victim into performing these acts. The Deputy Prosecutor doubled down on his argument by emphasizing that De Victoria abandoned his duty of care to pursue his own sexual agenda.
Ultimately, the Judge sided with the state and found that arguments in favor of reducing De Victoria’s life sentence were not supported by evidence or state law.
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