By Paul Daquilante • Staff Writer • 

Prison term handed down in assault

Ignacio Llerenas’ victim was absent for his plea and sentencing hearing Tuesday morning, saying she still doesn’t feel safe, even though he is facing 32 months in prison followed by deportation.

The woman said she’s afraid he will lash out at her, maybe even kill her, District Attorney Amanda Dresen said.

Judge John Collins pronounced sentence in Yamhill County Circuit Court after Llerenas pleaded guilty to one count each of second-degree sexual abuse and unlawful use of a weapon, both Class C felonies.

Llerenas was originally changed with two counts each of first-degree rape and coercion, and one count each of kidnapping, harassment and unlawful use of a weapon. Court-appointed defense attorney Mark Lawrence of McMinnville negotiated the reduced terms on behalf of his 44-year-old client.

Dresen gave this account of the Oct. 10 attack:

Llerenas had abused the victim physically, sexually and verbally on previous occasions. He had once perpetrated a sexual assault at knifepoint and once threatened to run her over with a vehicle.

When he spotted her with a male friend at a grocery store, he became enraged. He assumed they were having a sexual relationship, though she said that wasn’t the case.

Llerenas forced her into his vehicle, drove her to his McMinnville residence, held her down and forced sex on her.

“She told him to stop because it hurt, and he told her to ‘shut up,’” Dresen said. “He denied she told him to stop.”

Llerenas drove her to her neighborhood and let her out about two blocks from her residence. He told her he would kill both her and her friend if she went to police.

Police were alerted after she went to the hospital for treatment.

In the course of their investigation, they learned he had sexually assaulted her at knifepoint in a previous incident as well. However, she didn’t report it, because she was afraid he would kill her.

To assist them in making their case, police had her make a pretext phone call to Llerenas and record the conversation.

When she told him she wasn’t going to let him force her into anything again, he reiterated his threat to kill her and her friend. He told her she’d better watch out.

When taken into custody, Llerenas told police he was angry when he saw her with another man and confronted her about it. He claimed the sex that followed was consensual.

He admitted holding a knife to her throat in the previous incident, but denied having raped her. He said he pulled the knife because he was angry.

Llerenas, who had been scheduled to go on trial Tuesday, declined the chance to speak on his own behalf. He deferred to Lawrence, who challenged the victim’s credibility.

Lawrence insisted the sex was consensual, and said evidence would have supported that at trial.

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