ST. GEORGE — A Cedar City man convicted of raping a mental challenged woman in 2014 was sentenced Tuesday to serve 10 years to life in prison.
A jury convicted Gerald Wayne Santos, 61, of first-degree felonies for rape and forcible sodomy in August following a two-day trial. Each charge carries a five year-to-life prison term.
During a sentencing hearing held in 5th District Court in Cedar City, Judge Matthew Bell ordered the prison terms to be served consecutively, according to court records.
The charges stem from a May 2014 incident in which Santos was accused of raping a then 22-year-old woman who is described in court records as having a “mental disability that makes her brain function similar to that of a small child with multiple limitations.”
According to arrest documents, the woman was out walking her dogs and came across Santos who was working in the front yard of a vacant home as a part of his employment.
The woman stopped to talk to Santos and they spoke with each other over an extended period of time. Santos asked the woman to go inside the home so he could show her something inside. Once inside, he took her into a closet and raped her, according to arrest documents.
During an interview at the Iron County Correctional Facility following his arrest, Santos waived his Miranda rights and told police he and the woman had sex with their clothes on and that he exposed and touched parts of her body.
Santos also said he could tell the woman appeared to have a mental disability.
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