RENO, Nev. (KOLO)-- A Washoe County man has been sentenced to 105 years in prison for child sexual assault and lewdness.
The sentence follows a guilty verdict handed down in May 2018. 44-year-old Mario Antonio Lemus was convicted on three counts of Sexual Assault of a Child Under 14 Years of Age and one count of Lewdness with a Child Under 14 Years of Age.
According to the Washoe County District Attorney's Office, the case against Lemus began in July 2016 when the Sparks Police Department responded to Saint Mary’s Regional Medical Center on a report of a sexual assault of a 13-year-old girl. The victim had told her family she had been assaulted and was taken to the hospital after expressing concern she was pregnant.
Sparks Police detectives responded and began an investigation coordinated through the Washoe County Child Advocacy Center. Based on interviews and an admission by Lemus, detectives determined the victim had been sexually assaulted since the age of seven or eight by Lemus.
Following the investigation, detectives received information that Lemus had left the country. They requested an arrest warrant and Lemus was taken into custody at LAX airport in Los Angeles in March 2017.
At sentencing, Chief Deputy District Attorney Nicole Hicks argued that "the bravery this child exhibited during trial ensured that the abuse stopped, against her or any future abuse at the hands of Lemus," Hicks said. “This sentence ensures that Lemus will not have the ability to sexually abuse another child victim in his lifetime.”