The Eastern New Mexico News - Serving Clovis, Portales and the Surrounding Communities

Man sentenced to 44 years in rape case


February 7, 2018

David Grieder

Roy Brown looks toward his family after being sentenced Tuesday to 44 years in prison on rape convictions from last year.

PORTALES — A man found guilty last year of rape was sentenced Tuesday to 44 years in prison.

In September a jury convicted Roy Brown, 28, of Portales, on two counts of first-degree felony criminal sexual penetration, among other charges. He was arrested in June 2016 and accused of sexually assaulting a woman after forcibly entering her home south of Portales.

For each of the guilty rape verdicts Judge Donna Mowrer gave Brown sentences of 18 years plus a four-year enhancement for prior felony convictions, to be run consecutive to one another. He will be required to serve 85 percent of those combined 44 years before he is eligible for parole.

Mowrer also sentenced Brown to 364 days each for his related convictions of aggravated battery and resisting, evading or obstructing an officer and seven years for burglary, all of which are to run concurrent to the rape sentence. He is also required to register for life as a sex offender.

District Attorney Andrea Reeb had asked Mowrer for the maximum punishment, up to 53 years if all of the sentences were run concurrent.

"This is a man in our community that serves no purpose but to commit crimes and terrorize innocent people," Reeb said. "This was a heinous, heinous crime."

Brown's defense attorney Craig Acorn asked Mowrer to run the two rape sentences concurrent, noting the separate charges originated the same night.

"All of these events that Mr. Brown is convicted of are really one event," he said during the hearing Tuesday morning. "It's going to be a harsh sentence no matter what it is."

Acorn also said Brown was "wrongfully convicted," calling the investigation "inept and dishonest" and the court proceedings "a miscarriage of justice."

An appeal is "absolutely" coming, Acorn said Tuesday afternoon, on the basis of identification, "improper" forensic testing and "the sufficiency of the evidence generally."

Brown still asserted his innocence during the sentencing hearing.

"I feel bad for (the victim)," he said. "I can't sit here and say I'm sorry for something I didn't do."

Reeb reminded the court that evidence presented during trial included proof of the victim's blood under Brown's fingernails and her DNA on his underwear.

Acorn continued to argue that the forensic evidence was "incredibly flawed" and defended Brown's refusal to claim the crime.

"When you enter sentencing like that, to not be able to say the defendant is remorseful, which is what you're supposed to do when you're convicted of a crime - but you can't do that when you're professing your innocence." he said. "We're sorry about (what happened to the victim) but we didn't cause it."

Of the victim, Reeb said the woman testified for over seven hours during trial, an amount "unheard of" in her 21 years as a prosecutor.

An officer investigating the crime also said the case stood out.

"In my nine years (with the Roosevelt County Sheriff Office) this is the most horrific, disgusting crime I've ever investigated," Deputy Chris McCasland said during the hearing.

The victim also addressed the court, speaking in Spanish with a translator. She said she was angry and devastated after the crime but endured counseling and court proceedings for the hope of healing and justice.

"In truth, I felt that only God's hands could help me. ... I felt like only a miracle could get me through this," she said, expressing gratitude to police, counselors and prosecutors.

Addressing Mowrer directly, she said, "all of my thanks to you, your honor, for being the judge that God took the form of."


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