Gonzaga-Gama pleads guilty to second rape


News staff writer

June 17, 2006

Convicted rapist Ruperto Gonzaga-Gama, 18, pleaded guilty to a second charge of felony rape Wednesday in Hood River County Circuit Court.

The charge stemmed from the Jan. 12 rape of a Markham Road woman. Gonzaga-Gama was sentenced May 1 to 16 years in prison for the rape of a Collins Road woman on Feb. 14.

For the Markham Road rape, Judge Paul G. Crowley sentenced Gonzaga-Gama to 100 months in prison that will be served concurrently with the previous sentence.

“As a highly dangerous sexual predator, you will be released into the community, not our community, not the U.S., but a community … so it is very appropriate you spend a lot of time in prison for whatever you have done but it would (also) be appropriate if you received some sex offender treatment,” Crowley said.

Gonzaga-Gama is a native of Mexico and will be deported following the fulfillment of the sentence. The victim in the Markham Road rape did not make a statement at Wednesday’s hearing.

“The horrible impact this has had on the victim and her family, I suppose only other victims can understand,” Sewell said. “Both the victim and the state take comfort in the fact the suspect will be incarcerated for at least 16 years.”

He said Gonzaga-Gama’s guilty plea had kept the victim from having to testify during a jury trial. The rapist will have to also serve a 20-year period of post–prison supervision less time actually served. Judge Crowley added the condition that Gonzaga-Gama not be allowed contact with the victim in either case or their families.

In the Markham Road rape in January, the assault took place after 5:30 a.m. when the victim went outside because her dogs were barking.

In the Collins Road rape, Gonzaga-Gama assaulted the woman at knifepoint. He tied her up and stole an SUV.

She managed to get loose a few minutes after he had left and notified 9-1-1. After an aerial search conducted by the Hood River Sheriff’s office, Sheriff Joe Wampler spotted the stolen vehicle behind a farm shed on Imai Road and law enforcement officers arrested Gonzaga-Gama shortly after.

At the May 1 sentencing, the Collins Road rape victim urged him to confess if he had raped anyone else. Sewell chose to file charges in the Markham Road case after noticing similarities between the two assaults.

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Parkdale third graders sing "12 Disaster Days of Christmas"

Welcome to your sing-able Christmas gift list. What follows is an emergency rendition of “12 Days of Christmas” – for outfitting your home or car in case of snow storm, earthquake, flood or other emergency. Read it as a simple list, or sing it to the tune of “12 Days” – you know, as in “ … and a partridge in a pear tree…” Not to make light of it, but the song is a familiar framework for a set of gift ideas that you could consider gathering together, even if the recipient already owns items such as a bunch of coats, tire chains and flashlights. Stores throughout the Gorge are stocked up on all these items. Buying all 12 days might be prohibitive, but here are three ideas for checking any of the dozen off your list (notations follow, 1-12.) The gift items needed to stay warm, dry and safe are also coded to suggest items in your abode (A) in your car (C) or both (B). 12 Gallons of Water (A) 11 Family meals (B) 10 Cans of propane (A) 9 Hygiene bags (B) 8 Packs of batteries (A) 7 Spare coats (B) 6 Bright red flares (C) 5 Cozy blankets (B) 4 Tire chains (C) 3 Flashlights (B) 2 cell phone chargers (B) 1 And a crush-proof first aid kit (B) Price ranges? Here’s a few quotes for days Three, Two, Four and Nine: n A family gift of flashlights (three will run $15-30, Hood River Supply, Tum-A-Lum) n Cell phone chargers (two will run $30-60) n Tire chains (basic set, $30, Les Schwab, returnable if unused for the winter) n Family meals ($100 or so should cover the basics for three or four reasonably well-fed days) n The home kit should be kept in a handy place near an exit, and remember that water needs to be replenished every few months. If you have a solid first aid kit already, switch out the gift idea with “and-a-sto-o-u-t- tub-for it-all …” Otherwise, it’s a case of assembling your home or car kits and making sure all members of the family know what the resources are and how to use them (ie flares and propane). Emergency situations are at worst life-threatening, at best deeply uncomfortable if you and your family are left without power for an extended period, or traveling and find yourself in a situation where you need to wait out a storm, lengthy traffic delay, or other crisis. Notes on the 12 gift ideas: 12 – Gallons of water: that’s one per person in a four-member family to last for three days, the recommended minimum to be prepared for utility outages. 11 – Easy-open packaged goods, energy bars, dried food and nuts are good things to include for nutrition. Think of what your family of four needs for three days to stay fortified and hydrated (see number 12). Can-opener also recommended 10 – If you have a propane camping stove, keep extra fuel handy. 9 – Hygiene bags: put packaged moistened towelettes, toilet paper, and plastic ties in large garbage bags (for personal sanitation) Resource list courtesy of Hood River County Emergency Management, Barbara Ayers, manager/ 541-386-1213. The county also reminds residents to Get a Kit, Make A Plan to connect your family if separated, and Stay Informed. See www.co.hood-river.or.us to opt-in for citizen alerts. Enlarge

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