Admitted rapist gets 35 years in prison - East Valley Tribune: East Valley Local News

Admitted rapist gets 35 years in prison

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Posted: Thursday, June 5, 2003 6:38 am | Updated: 1:47 pm, Thu Oct 6, 2011.

An admitted rapist on Wednesday vowed to rehabilitate himself in prison and figure out what drove him to attack three women from Scottsdale and Phoenix.

He’ll have nearly 35 years to do it. Maricopa County Superior Court Judge Mark Aceto sentenced Jaime L. Cruz to that much time behind bars for his crimes.

"I wish I could take it all away, and I really mean this, each and every victim’s pain," Cruz said.

Cruz pleaded guilty in March to three counts of sexual assault and one count of attempted sexual assault, offenses that could have landed him in prison for up to 57 years under the plea agreement.

He was charged with two 1996 rapes and one 2000 rape after he was forced to provide his DNA while serving a 1 1 /2-year prison sentence for an aggravated drunken-driving conviction, according to court records.

Last year, inmates convicted of murder, sex crimes and burglary were required to submit a blood sample to the Combined DNA Index System, or CODIS, a national database of DNA profiles of convicts and DNA evidence from crime scenes. Drug offenders were added to the group this year, and beginning next year all felons will have to submit DNA. With 57 days left on his drunken-driving sentence, the database matched him to the rapes.

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