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Man accused of raping 15-year-old girl gets 90 days in jail

By Jessica Prokop The Columbian (Vancouver, Wash.)

A Vancouver, Washington, man accused of raping a 15-year-old girl in his car more than a year ago was sentenced Wednesday in Clark County Superior Court to 90 days in jail.

Efrain Marcos Rodriguez III, 27, entered an “in re Barr” plea to communicating with a minor for immoral purposes, which allows a defendant to plead guilty to a lesser-related charge he didn’t commit in order to avoid conviction for a greater offense. The original charge of third-degree child rape was amended as part of the plea deal.

According to court records, the girl was walking on Dec. 19, 2015, when Rodriguez pulled up behind her in a white BMW. She told police that Rodriguez got out of his car, grabbed her by her backpack and hair, and shoved her into the front passenger seat of his car.

He then began sexually assaulting her but stopped when someone walked by, the affidavit states.

Rodriguez asked the girl where she wanted to be dropped off. She said she didn’t want him to know where she lived so she asked him to take her to a grocery store in Hazel Dell. When they arrived, he called her a “slut” and told her to get out of his car, according to court documents.

The girl’s mother took her to a hospital the next day for a sexual assault exam, which yielded DNA that was later matched to Rodriguez, court records said.

During his hearing, Rodriguez’s attorney, Jeff Staples, said the girl misrepresented her age to his client. However, Rodriguez still wanted to take responsibility for his actions, he said.

The girl was not present Wednesday and did not submit a statement.

Judge Derek Vanderwood followed the attorneys’ agreed-upon sentencing recommendation of 364 days, with 274 days of the time suspended. Rodriguez also must register as a sex offender. He was given credit for 89 days in custody.

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