ELLSWORTH — An Orland man was ordered March 7 to serve five years in prison with all but one year suspended for raping a developmentally disabled woman.
The victim had gotten rides from a social service agency bus that Van Stevens, 50, had driven, according to an arrest warrant affidavit written by Maine State Police Trooper David Barnard.
The woman’s mother was alerted that something was wrong and called police when Stevens allegedly arrived at the family’s residence March 10, 2018, to take her daughter on a trip to Bangor in his personal vehicle, according to Barnard.
District Attorney Matt Foster said the sentencing was a plea arrangement.
Stevens pleaded guilty to one count of gross sexual assault and one count of aggravated assault.
“We wanted to avoid a trial in this case due to considerations surrounding the family’s wishes in that regard,” Foster said via email. “I am pleased that we were able to come to an appropriate resolution that avoided the necessity of having the victim have to relive the events at a trial.”
Foster also said Stevens’ sentence will “protect the community into the future by having him be required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life.”
“The victim and her family were present and spoke at sentencing and afterward relayed that they were very pleased with how this office handled the matter and with the outcome,” Foster said.
Ellsworth attorney William Ashe represented Stevens.
The American could not reach Ashe before publication.