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Santa Barbara County man sentenced to 50 years to life in prison for sexual assault

SANTA BARBARA COUNTY, Calif. -- A Santa Barbara Superior Court judge sentenced a 44-year-old man to 50 years to life in prison for assault and sexual assault, according to the Santa Barbara County District Attorney's Office.

Robert Contreras was found guilty of three counts of forcible sexual assault and five counts of felony assault following a jury trial in Santa Maria, according to Barbara Ross, executive assistant to the DA.

Contreras was also found guilty of the special allegations that he tortured and used a deadly weapon when he forcibly sexually assaulted the victim, Ross said.

During the trial, Deputy District Attorney Catherine Martin presented evidence that, over a five-day period, Contreras beat Jane Doe with a tennis racket, an extension cord, and a vacuum while sexually assaulting her, according to Ross.

Doe testified during the trial and described the physical and psychological harm that she endured as a result of the abuse.

"In a written victim impact statement, Jane Doe described her journey and recovery in becoming a survivor of domestic violence," Ross said. "Her bravery in reporting the abuse and courage in testifying at trial directly resulted in the jury’s verdict."

The verdict, made by Santa Barbara Superior Court Judge Patricia Kelly, and sentence were also the result of an investigation by Detective Mathew Silver and the Santa Maria Police Department, Ross said.

Article Topic Follows: Santa Maria - Lompoc - North County

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Jade Martinez-Pogue

Jade Martinez-Pogue is the Assignment Editor and web journalist at News Channel 3-12. To learn more about Jade, click here


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