Alexandria man sentenced to 10 years for sexual assault of woman in her home

WASHINGTON — An Alexandria, Virginia, man has been sentenced to 10 years in prison for sexually assaulting a woman in her home, where he was working as a contractor.

Melvin Eliazar Moreno Rodriguez, 39, of Alexandria, was sentenced Monday on one count of aggravated sexual battery by force, threat or intimidation with serious injury. He pleaded no contest to the charge and was found guilty May 7, the office of Commonwealth’s Attorney Jim Plowman said in a statement.

On March 17, 2017, Moreno Rodriguez was working as a contractor in the victim’s home. When the other contractors left the property for lunch, Moreno Rodriguez stayed behind and sexually assaulted the victim. In the struggle, the victim was able to fight off Moreno Rodriguez and run out of the house to call for help.

The victim suffered physical injuries during the assault and continues to suffer from post-traumatic stress disorder, her lawyers argued. A medical exam revealed Moreno Rodriguez’s DNA on the victim’s chest.

“While physical injuries are more predictable when it comes to healing, each person subject to an attack such as this, often faces unknown trauma recovery,” Plowman said in the statement. “This sentence highlights and recognizes the ‘unseen’ injuries that victims and families must deal with in the aftermath of such an offense.”

Judge Stephen E. Sincavage handed down the sentence, saying “the people of the Commonwealth needed to be protected from the defendant.” He imposed an additional 10 years of suspended time. Upon his release, Moreno Rodriguez will also be placed on 15 years of supervised probation and be required to register as a sex offender.

A native of Guatemala, Moreno Rodriguez may be subject to an immigration detainer, which would direct his removal from the United States upon his release.

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