A judge in Fairfax County, Virginia, rejected a plea deal on Friday for a man accused of repeatedly sexually assaulting a girl, calling the deal too lenient.
Circuit Court Judge Randy I. Bellows said the three-year sentence did not “remotely reflect the magnitude of the defendant’s misconduct,” according to The Washington Post.
Rey Amparado, 39, was charged with raping the girl — described in court as a distant relative of his — four times between the time she was in the fifth and seventh grades.
Prosecutors defended the plea deal, saying it was the best they could do because mistakes made by the Herndon Police Department during the investigation were so serious that a trial could have resulted in an acquittal.
While the judge agreed there were flaws in the case, which began in December 2019, he said the proposed plea deal did not reflect the gravity of the alleged crimes.
Bellows said he is allowing prosecutors to admit evidence of multiple other charges at a potential trial, including allegations that Amparado raped another girl as well.
If Amparado had been found guilty, he could have been sentenced to life in prison. The case will now continue, although it’s unclear if another trial will be held.
WTOP’s Christopher Cruise contributed to this report.