Carson City man sentenced on statutory sexual assault with a child charge
A Carson City man was sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole Tuesday morning for statutory sexual assault with a child.
Drake Martin, 21, was sentenced in District Court Tuesday morning to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 25 years for allegations he had sexual intercourse and contact with a 16-year-old female for nearly seven years.
Martin was originally supposed to stand trial in December, however, he changed his plea to guilty on the sexual assault with a child under the age of 16 charges. Martin was originally charged on eight counts of sexual assault and other related charges for the most recent four incidents from December 2014 to February 2015 though the abuse had been occurring since the victim was seven years old. He originally tried to claim all contact between the two was consensual.
The state argued for the harshest punishment, a life sentence that would run consecutively with other unrelated charges, stating the severity of the crime constituted the sentence.
“We are not just talking about a sexual assault of a victim since she was seven,” said Assistant District Attorney Kristen Luis.
Marcie Ryba, Martin’s defense tried to counter Luis, saying that because the sexual abuse started when Martin was 14, he was unaware of what was right and wrong as well and was confused by what was going on. Ryba also tried to blame his actions on his difficult upbringing, saying Martin’s parents were both meth addicts and he could have possibly faced abuse himself.
Luis said because the abuse was ongoing and because the victim was so young, there was no way she could have given consent. The victim alleged in court once the abuse started, it would occur nearly every day or every other day.
“I never gave him consent,” the victim told the court. “(I told him no) all the time and he wouldn’t listen. I would literally beg him to stop and he wouldn’t care. I finally reported him because I didn’t want him to do it again.”
The Assistant DA also told the court the victim suffers from depression, anxiety, and now feels displaced.
“This made things hard,” the victim told the court. “I am really depressed and it is hard for me to trust anyone … He made me feel disgusting and now I know it’s not my fault, but back then I did.”
Judge Todd Russell agreed with the District Attorney’s office, though he ran the sentence concurrent to the others because he was going with the highest punishment for the sexual assault crime. He said he took into consideration the damage done, the fact Martin pleaded guilty and saved the child from testifying in front of a jury, and Martin’s psychosexual evaluation that rated him a low risk to reoffend.
“I am (running this concurrent) because the punishment is the same for someone with a murder charge; it is a very high sentence and very severe,” Russell said. “I am not minimizing (the other sexual counts) at all, they are terrible crimes against a child.”
Martin will be eligible for parole in 25 years. He will have to register as a sex offender and have a lifetime supervision clause.