A Warsaw man was sentenced this morning for child molesting charges from 2009.
Terren Raphael, 23, of 2411 W. CR 250S, Warsaw, was sentenced to 15 years at the Indiana Department of Corrections, with the last five years served on probation.
A second count of child molesting was dismissed.
These were the terms that were presented in a plea agreement Jan. 29 to Superior Court Judge David Cates, that he accepted this morning.
Raphael’s attorney, Jay Rigdon, stated that Raphael was a “very simple young man,” and noted that since the incident occurred Raphael has worked a full-time job and does not have a criminal record. He also asked the judge to consider Raphael’s behavior and that he wasn’t looking for a “pass” but for appropriate time to serve.
Raphael apologized for his actions stating he was a “family person” and concluded by turning to his family and saying, “I love you, guys, I really do.”
The victim’s mother took the stand and provided a victim impact statement to the courtroom. She said over the last six years she has witnessed a change in her daughters and that “they deserve to feel safe and see the world is on their side.” She said Raphael’s actions did not only affect one person, but an entire family.
Kosciusko County Deputy Prosecutor Katy Hampton stressed that this was a “crime of opportunity” because the child and Raphael lived in the same household at the time of the incident and “your home is suppose to be your safe place.”
At the time of the incident, Raphael was 18 years old and the child was 11 years old. The victim told the police during the time of the incidents, she was threatened by Raphael and told not to tell anyone.
Cates said after reviewing Raphael’s pre-sentence investigation, he realized Raphael did some good things, but it wasn’t enough to depreciate the severity of the crime. He said his interpretation of Raphael’s statements was that Raphael was blaming an 11-year-old for his own actions.
“I find this to be a very serious offense,” Cates said.
During his time on probation, Raphael must maintain a full-time job and no alcohol is permitted. He must also register as a sex offender and is not allowed any indirect or direct contact with the victim or her family at any point.
(Story By The Times Union)