Prosecutor explains plea deal for Warren County man sentenced to 15 years for child rape

Fabian Esparza-Tapia
Fabian Esparza-Tapia

Credit: Warren County Jail

Credit: Warren County Jail

A Warren County man has been sentenced to prison for the sexual abuse of a child.

Fabian Esparza-Tapia, 35, of Salem Twp., pleaded guilty on Tuesday in Warren County Common Pleas Court to rape, gross sexual imposition, sexual battery and illegal use of a minor or impaired person in nudity-oriented material or performance.

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Esparza-Tapia was then sentenced to 15 years in prison by Judge Donald Oda II. He was also designated a Tier III sex offender, meaning Esparza-Tapia must register and verify his address with the sheriff every 90 days for life.

Between 2017 and 2020, Esparza-Tapia sexually assaulted a child from ages 12 through 15. The offenses occurred when the victim would visit Esparza-Tapia at his home with her sibling.

A family member saw nude photographs of the victim on the victim’s iPad, which led to the discovery of the assaults, according to the Warren County Prosecutor’s Office. The victim said Esparza-Tapia directed her to send the photographs to him.

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Esparza-Tapia was originally facing 10 felony sex charges and pleaded guilty to four charges as part of a plea bargain, according to Warren County Prosecutor David Fornshell. The 15-year sentence was also part of the plea deal.

Fornshell said the victim and her parents wished to pursue a resolution as opposed to going to trial.

“Anytime you have sexual assault allegations, those are particularly difficult cases for the victim,” Fornshell said. “So it was a negotiated plea by agreement with the victim. Fifteen years (sentence) is the number of years were were able to get in lieu of going to trial. The stresses of going through trial for a sexual assault victim can be difficult, so this was a resolution that allowed us to get a significant prison sentence all be it maybe not much as perhaps we could have gotten.”

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