LANCASTER – A convicted child sex offender, who sneaked into the country after he was deported to Mexico and then sexually abused an Antelope Valley girl for nearly seven years, was sentenced Friday to 518 years and four months to life in state prison.
Superior Court Judge Daviann Mitchell imposed the maximum term on Jose de Jesus Santana Aguilar, 52, who had previously been convicted in 1994 for committing a lewd act on another girl.
“You are a menace to society… you are a predator,” the judge told Aguilar, after hearing victim impact statements from the victim, her mother and her godmother.
The latest case involved sexual abuse that began in 2007 when the Littlerock girl was 12 and continued until she was 18. The victim was the daughter of Aguilar’s girlfriend at the time.
“You took away my childhood,” the victim told Aguilar in a tearful impact statement Friday. The girl said she cried herself to sleep for many years and had to endure the worst years of her life because she was too afraid to come forward. She thanked her family, detectives and the prosecutor for helping to bring Aguilar to justice, and she said she was stronger after having survived the ordeal.
“I will not see myself as a victim but as a survivor,” the girl said.
Speaking through a Spanish interpreter, the girl’s mother said she had loved Aguilar with all her soul and she never would have imagined his actions.
“You not only destroyed my daughter, you destroyed me as a woman…” she said. “May God forgive you because I will never forgive you.”
Last month, Antelope Valley jurors deliberated for two hours before finding Aguilar guilty of four counts of sodomy by use of force, three counts of committing a lewd act on a child, two counts each of continuous sexual abuse and forcible oral copulation of a victim over the age of 14 and one count of sexual penetration by a foreign object of a victim over the age of 14.
Before his trial began, Aguilar pleaded no contest to five counts of failing to update his sex offender registration annually and admitted that he had the 1994 child sex crime conviction.
In a sentencing memorandum, Deputy District Attorney Jon Hatami detailed Aguilar’s prior criminal record.
According to the document, Aguilar was arrested in 1994 for raping his cousin’s 13-year-old daughter. The “forcible act of sexual intercourse” happened during the time 31-year-old Aguilar was staying with his cousin in Los Angeles. Aguilar told detectives he had sex with the girl but said they were in a relationship, according to a police report attached to the memorandum. Aguilar pleaded no contest Dec. 7, 1994, to lewd acts upon a child under 14. Less than two weeks later, Aguilar was released from jail and placed on felony probation, according to court records.
He violated that probation in the following months by failing to register as a sex offender and by showing up at the victim’s school and home, according to the prosecutor. In July of 1995, Aguilar was accused of removing a screen from the victim’s bedroom window and using a car antenna to attempt to molest the sleeping girl through the bars of her bedroom window, according to a police report. It would be three years before Aguilar answered for the probation violations.
On Feb. 19, 1998, after a probation violation hearing, Aguilar was sentenced to six years in state prison. He completed his custody time and then he was deported to Mexico, according to court records.
Sometime in 2004, Aguilar illegally re-entered the United States and moved into his girlfriend’s Antelope Valley residence, according to the prosecutor. He then proceeded to molest, rape and sodomize his girlfriend’s 12-year-old daughter, from the time she was in seventh grade until she turned 18.
“The victim and her family have been through so much and they finally have received justice,” Hatami stated. “The jury did a very good job in the case. The defendant is a clear danger to young girls in the Antelope Valley and he will never again be able to hurt another child.”
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