Reward offered for man who disappeared during his rape trial
Ever Valencia fled before he was convicted
A reward of up to $1,000 is being offered for information about a man who disappeared during his rape trial.
A jury deliberated less than 10 minutes before convicting Ever Valencia of raping a 12-year old girl in early 2018. Valencia was 18 at the time. He is now 20.
After Valencia vanished during the second day of his trial, the trial continued without him.
Valencia’s attorney, Ted Hess, argued that the sex was consensual.
Prosecutor Jake Lilly countered that the girl was too young to consent.
“Everybody agrees they had sex. She does not get to say yes. The law does not allow that (at her age), and we are a nation of laws,” Lilly said.
The jury agreed with Lilly in what he called one of the quickest convictions of his career.
Hess said the victim’s mother is in the country illegally, and will probably apply from a crime victim’s visa, or U visa. Because the victim is a minor, if her mother can show she cooperated with the investigation and prosecution, she could receive the U visa for which her daughter — the actual victim in this case — would be eligible.
The courts ordered a nationwide extradition warrant. If Valencia is caught, he will be held without bond for failure to appear and violation of felony bail bond conditions.
Valencia is 5 feet, 9 inches tall and weighs 150 pounds.
Snow usually comes and goes in this part of the state. A forecasted storm is expected to stick around for a while. Forecasters are calling for snow to persist throughout the weekend in the high country, with a prospect of a couple of feet of powder by the time the storm starts to diminish on Monday.