Soto sentenced to 18 years for sexually assaulting young girl | News
PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) --
A man was sentenced to at least 18 years in in state prison Tuesday after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a seven-year-old girl after breaking into her bedroom in an apartment in Portland.
Julian Soto appeared before a judge in the Cumberland County Courthouse Tuesday afternoon.
As part of a plea agreement, the judge sentenced Soto to 18 years in prison, with another possible seven years if Soto reoffends during his 10-year probation period.
The attorney for the prosecution said that Soto used a footstool that he found in the trash to stand on in order to break into the girl's bedroom in an apartment on Greenleaf Street in Portland. Soto lived in the apartment above the victim and her family. The family had just moved in three days before the assault happened around October 9, 2014.
The prosecution said that the girl reported being "poked by a finger," and that DNA evidence in the girl's underwear matched Soto's.
Soto was found and arrested in Massachusetts, and was brought back to Maine in late October 2014.
The prosecution said Soto had a prior criminal history, involving a misdemeanor for indecent exposure when exposed himself to a store clerk. The prosecution also noted that Soto had exposed himself to a custodian while he was in high school.
The family's attorney submitted two documents to the judge. One was a letter from the victim; the other was a letter from the victim's mother.
The mother wrote that Soto "took away [her daughter's] innocence," and that he "reinvented the Boogeyman."
The defense said that Soto was remorseful, and wanted to accept responsibility, saying that he had insight that his behavior was wrong.
Neither Soto nor the family chose to address the court when asked.
As part of Soto's probation, he may not possess or use any alcohol or illegal drugs. He also may not have any direct or indirect contact with the victim or her family, nor may he have any contact with any females younger than 18. He also may not be near schools, playground, or childcare facilities, and he must be listed as a registered sex offender for his entire life.