HANFORD — An Avenal man convicted of the 2015 rape, assault and torture of a teenage girl was sentenced recently in Kings County Superior Court, Kings County District Attorney’s officials said.
On Thursday, Honorable Judge Donna Tarter sentenced 24-year-old Eddie Perez to three terms of life in prison without the possibility of parole, plus ten years.
The victim, now an adult, and her mother were present for the sentencing, said Assistant District Attorney Phil Esbenshade. He said both women spoke at the sentencing, making victim impact statements.
On June 27, a Kings County jury found Perez guilty for the 2015 assault of the then 16-year-old girl. The trial took place over seven days in the Kings County Superior Court starting on June 17.
Perez was found guilty of three counts of forcible rape of a child with torture; one count of torture with personal use of a deadly weapon; one count of assault with means to commit rape; one count of mayhem; one count of assault with a deadly weapon causing great bodily injury; as well as one count of domestic violence causing great bodily injury.
Esbenshade said Perez was also ordered to register as a sex offender for life.
In January 2015, the victim had been dating Perez, then 19, for a few months when, after a fight, he held her captive in his vehicle for five days, driving her to various parts of Kings County. According to past Sentinel reports, police said Perez refused to let the victim out of the car, not even to use the restroom.
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Officials said Perez assaulted the victim with several items on the first day of her captivity. Those items included a phone charger, the handle of a knife, and the item which inflicted the worst damage, a tire iron. Perez then poured a substance on the victim’s open wounds, which resulted in several chemical burns.
On Jan. 30, 2015, the victim was able to call for help from a passerby after Perez left her alone in the vehicle.
A media release from the DA’s office said Hanford Police Corporal Jason Gustin was the first to respond, noting the victim had a severe injuries and the vehicle reeked of urine.
The victim was taken to Community Regional Medical Center, where she spent 30 days receiving treatment for her injuries. The most severe injuries consisted of third degree chemical burns, which required several surgeries for skin grafts, as well as treatment for a broken bone in her hand.
Hanford Police Detective Ryan Tomey investigated the case, taking statements and collecting evidence. Officials said this required multiple interviews of the victim, which had to be taken over time due the medical condition of the victim at the time she was found.
A day later on Jan. 31, 2015, Perez was located in an apartment in Hanford and arrested.
The case was prosecuted by Deputy District Attorney Melissa D’Morias. D’Morias said the success of the prosecution was due to the extensive investigations done by the Hanford Police Department, as well as the District Attorney Investigations and Victim Witness Unit.