A single father of two was sentenced to 20 years in prison last week after admitting that he climbed through a neighbor’s window to engage in sexual intercourse.
District Attorney Will Furse said Merrick Tom, 36, of Cortez was in a “blacked out” state when he tied the victim down and raped her repeatedly on Jan. 3. Before leaving the scene, the defendant hid the victim’s cell phone, and then walked home, Furse said.
Public defender Amy R. Smith said that her client felt guilt and regret for creating “every woman’s worst nightmare.”
She argued her client’s alcohol-fueled actions were uncharacteristic, and that he had shamed himself and his family.
Tom’s cousin read a statement requesting leniency and expressing the family’s regret.
Present at the sentencing hearing on Thursday, July 23, the victim didn’t address the court.
In a written statement to the court, Tom apologized to victim, stating she didn’t deserve to be assaulted, and now “everyone suffers.
District Court Judge Todd Plewe said no words could help ease the victim’s “unimaginable pain” that resulted from Tom’s “heinous” actions.
After his prison time, Tom will be placed on supervised sex offender probation for 10 years and be required to register as a sex offender. He also was also ordered to pay $2,500 in restitution, including $1,500 for medical expenses.
Tom previously has pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree assault with a deadly weapon and a single count of attempted sexual assault.