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Cherokee Co. man gets life in prison for sexual assault of child

Cherokee Co. man gets life in prison for sexual assault of child
Cherokee County Sheriff's Office
CrimeWatch

POSTED: Thursday, August 28, 2014 - 9:19am

UPDATED: Thursday, October 23, 2014 - 11:44am

A Rusk man was sentenced to life in prison Wednesday for the aggravated sexual assault of a child under the age of 14.

According to Cherokee County prosecutor Charles Breaux, Rafael Villegas, 54, sexually assaulted a girl back in 2000. Officials were able to charge the convict because of an amended law allowing the state to prosecute crimes committed within 10 years of the victim's eighteenth birthday. Therefore, the statute of limitations did not apply.

Villegas was found guilty Tuesday by a grand jury. Breaux said the key to the case was testimony from three other adults who claimed they were sexually assaulted by Villegas when they were children.

The convict is currently facing two other indictments for aggravated sexual assault of a child. He may become eligible for parole after serving 30 years, Breaux stated.

Villegas also received five years in 2010 for a DWI and was currently out on parole when he was charged with the aggravated sexual assault.

Deborah Dictson was the lead prosecutor in this case.

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