Harrisburg man sentenced for child molestation

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HARRISBURG, Pa — In a Dauphin County courtroom this morning Rafael Ortiz admitted he was guilty of sexually molesting two young girls between the years of 2005 and 2008. Ortiz, 28 of Harrisburg, told Dauphin County President Judge Richard A. Lewis, “I’m sorry for what I did. I accept my punishment.” Lewis ordered Ortiz to serve 5 years to 10 years in state prison to be followed by a consecutive 10 years of probation supervision. Oritz admitted to sexually molesting the two girls on multiple occasions when the girls were between the ages of 5 and 8 years old. Ortiz was between the ages of 18 and 21 years old during the assaults and frequently babysat the girls.

Ortiz’s sentence was part of a negotiated plea agreement. The District Attorney’s Office agreed to the negotiated sentence after consulting with the victims and their family. The family agreed with the negotiated sentence. The girls are now teenagers and no longer live in the Harrisburg area. Chief Deputy District Attorney Se├ín M. McCormack indicated to Judge Lewis that one of the primary reasons behind the plea agreement was the fact that Oritz, by pleading guilty, spared his victims from having to testify both at the preliminary hearing and now at trial. “This was an agreement that spared these young girls from having to relive their abuse while testifying on the witness stand. Under even the most ordinary circumstances it can be stressful to testify as a witness in court. For a victim of sexual molestation, the stress of testifying is magnified by the fact that they have to recount to a courtroom full of strangers some of the most painful memories of their lives. All of this is done with their abuser looking on from across the courtroom. For all the pain and suffering Mr. Ortiz caused these young girls in the past, he at least spared them from being re-victimized at trial.”

Ortiz pleaded guilty to two counts each of rape, aggravated indecent assault, indecent assault, indecent exposure, unlawful restraint, unlawful contact with minors, corruption of minors and one count of involuntary deviate sexual intercourse. Judge Lewis ordered the Pennsylvania Sexual Offenders Assessment Board to conduct an evaluation of Ortiz to determine if he should be classified as a sexually violent predator under Pennsylvania’s Megan’s Law statute.

SOURCE: Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office