Man sentenced to 16 years prisonWORTHINGTON — A Guatemalan man who pleaded guilty in February to kidnapping and raping his estranged wife after stabbing her lover told Judge George Harrelson Monday he was drunk and angry when he found the two in bed together in 2007.
WORTHINGTON — A Guatemalan man who pleaded guilty in February to kidnapping and raping his estranged wife after stabbing her lover told Judge George Harrelson Monday he was drunk and angry when he found the two in bed together in 2007.
William Ramirez Perez, also known as Wilberto Moya Arce, Estuardo Ramirez and Filemon Ramirez Perez, gave a somewhat rambling account during a sentencing hearing in Nobles County District Court of the weeks and days that led into the incident that started in Pipestone and ended in Worthington.
Via an interpreter, Perez said he and his wife had been together since the age of 15, but he moved to the United States to have a better life.
After he sent for her, she left him for his brother, which hurt him very much, he said. With his wife and brother living in Maryland, Perez “came to hide here in Minnesota.”
Criminal complaints from Pipestone and Nobles Counties state authorities were called in October 2007 to a trailer home in Pipestone, where they found puddles of blood, but no inhabitants. A man who identified himself as the woman’s boyfriend called police from another location and was transported to the hospital with at least 12 knife wounds on his leg, arm, neck, cheek, groin and throat. Six hours after the assault was reported, Perez dropped his wife off at the emergency room in Worthington and fled, leaving behind a woman with severe facial injuries, bite marks, cuts and a cigarette burn. She had also been brutally raped, records show.
In February, Perez pleaded guilty to kidnapping, first-degree assault and first-degree criminal sexual conduct. He stated at the time he was guilty, but insisted he had not kidnapped his wife or forced himself on her. She had come to him, he said, to apologize for what she had done with another man.
On Monday, Perez told a story of a woman who left him for his brother, then sought him later in Worthington, where they lived together so he could “give her a chance.” She left him again to return to Maryland and his brother, then returned, begging his forgiveness, he said. “Because he is a humble man,” he claimed, he took her back. Even after changing jobs and locations several times while she lived in Pipestone, Perez told the judge he loved her and wanted to fight for their marriage.
He relayed a tale of drinking all evening before leaving his home in St. James to visit his wife in Pipestone on her insistence, but when he arrived, she was in bed with another man.
“When I saw her with another guy, I was mad,” Perez said. “I just lost it.”
The three of them fought and he left, stating he was going to kill himself, but his wife jumped in the vehicle and said she was going to kill herself, too, Perez claimed. When she opened the door of the moving vehicle, he tried to close it and accidentally dropped his lit cigarette on her. Later, he stated, the woman started hugging him and begging him not to tell her family what she had done, which led to intercourse that she “insisted” upon.
After dropping her off at the hospital, he fled to his home country and didn’t have the money to come back for a while, but eventually moved to Ohio. He was arrested in Ohio after being pulled over for a driving violation.
“I regret what I did,” Perez told Harrelson.
He was sentenced to 86 months for the assault, 110 months for the kidnapping and 199 months for the rape. All three sentences will be served concurrently, with credit for time served in jail. With good behavior, Perez will serve two-thirds of the sentence in prison and the final third on supervised release.
Before leaving, Perez had his attorney ask Harrelson if he had any influence toward getting him an education or skills training while he serves his sentence.
“I don’t have any authority over that,” Harrelson said. “That’s up to the Commissioner of Corrections.”
Daily Globe Reporter Justine Wettschreck may be reached at