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Man gets 20 years for assault of 9-year-old

WOODSTOCK – A Richmond man was sentenced Thursday to 20 years in prison for sexually assaulting a 9-year-old girl.

Ariel Guerra, 30, who also had a recent address in Crystal Lake, pleaded guilty to two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, both Class X felonies.

McHenry County Judge Charles P. Weech accepted the terms of the negotiated plea, telling Guerra that he must serve at least 85 percent of the sentence, or 17 years, before he is eligible to be released from prison. He had faced between 45 and 120 years in prison at sentencing.

Guerra also must serve at least three years of parole when he is released and register for life as a sex offender.

The victim, who is not related to Guerra, was sexually assaulted from June 2010 to May 2011, when she was 9 or 10 years old, Assistant State’s Attorney Sharyl Eisenstein said.

“This sentence is going to allow [the victim] to finish her childhood without worries and concerns about him,” she said.

Also as part of the plea deal, a misdemeanor charge that Guerra violated an order of protection was dropped.

In the request for that order of protection, Guerra was accused of “stalking, manipulating and harassing” a 17-year-old girl.

After Guerra’s release from prison, prosecutors could choose to file a petition to have him committed involuntarily and indefinitely – possibly for life – under the Sexually Violent Persons Commitment Act.

That decision is made by the Illinois Attorney General’s Office, Eisenstein said.

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