'Serial' York City child rapist gets more prison time

Liz Evans Scolforo

A "serial" York City child rapist, who in 2014 received a de facto life sentence, was back in York County Court on Friday after convincing an appeals court to grant him a new sentencing hearing.

But if Angel Martinez thought his punishment was going to be reduced, he was mistaken.

Angel Martinez

Common Pleas Judge Craig T. Trebilcock resentenced the 44-year-old Martinez to 81½ to 163 years in prison and described the man's crimes as "serial assaults." When the judge originally sentenced Martinez, it was to 80½ to 161 years in prison, according to court records.

Martinez used "trickery and intimidation ... (to) regularly and systematically" rape and sexually assault three different girls over a period of years, the judge noted, committing "well over 100 separate assaults."

Despite that, he "has demonstrated no remorse — ever," Trebilcock said, and has refused to participate in sexual offender treatment in state prison.

Can't be reformed: Martinez has no potential for rehabilitation, according to the judge, who determined Martinez is a sexually violent predator.

"The damage to (one of the victims) can only be described as crushing," Trebilcock said.

All three girls were between the ages of 11 and 14 when Martinez began raping and sexually assaulting them, according to chief deputy prosecutor Chuck Murphy.

York City Police Detective Kyle Hower started investigating the man in 2012 after one of his victims came forward, Murphy said. The other two girls subsequently came forward, documents state.

Murphy has praised all three for being strong enough to stand up and speak out against Martinez.

"These girls are three of the greatest girls I've ever met," he has said. "They were able to stop him from doing this to anyone else."

A jury on Dec. 12, 2013, found Martinez guilty of multiple offenses, including rape, child rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and aggravated indecent assault.

State law changed: Martinez's original punishment was voided by the state Superior Court because, when he was sentenced, Pennsylvania still had mandatory minimum sentences for certain offenses, including rape. But the state Supreme Court subsequently ruled that mandatory minimums are unconstitutional.

Because of that, the Superior Court remanded Martinez's case back to Trebilcock for resentencing.

Martinez showed no emotion in court. He maintains his innocence and is appealing his conviction, according to defense attorney Heather Reiner. The Superior Court has already affirmed his conviction, court records state.

Two of Martinez's three victims wrote updated victim-impact letters to the judge, describing what they are still going through, Murphy said. They did not attend Friday's proceeding.

Murphy said telling crime victims their abusers have won new sentences or trial is "a very hard conversation."

Rapist's mom: Martinez's 74-year-old mother, Maria Vega of East Maple Street in York City, was sentenced to five years of probation and had to perform community service after pleading no contest to the third-degree felony of witness intimidation.

Murphy said the plea agreement allowed Vega to avoid prison because of her age but held her accountable for her actions.

Martinez also was charged with intimidating one of his victims, but that charge was dismissed in 2014. Murphy said because Martinez is already serving a de facto life sentence, it wasn't necessary to make that victim testify in court a second time against her attacker.

— Reach Liz Evans Scolforo at levans@yorkdispatch.com or on Twitter at @LizScolforoYD.