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'Despicable' man gets 46 years to life in attack on teen relative

An Orange County Superior Court judge called Gonzalo Salazar "a despicable human being" Friday in sentencing the Santa Ana man to 46 years to life in prison for sexually assaulting and choking a 15-year-old girl who was related to him.

Salazar, 37, was convicted by a jury in May of felony rape and other charges stemming from the attack, which occurred nearly three years ago while he was living with extended family members in Santa Ana, the Orange County district attorney’s office said.

On Aug. 15, 2008, the girl went to her bedroom to sleep, while others in the family watched TV, prosecutors said. Salazar went to his room, climbed out the window and back in through the girl’s bedroom window, prosecutors said.

Salazar then sexually assaulted the girl and choked her "so severely that she faded in and out of consciousness" and suffered injuries "consistent with being near death," prosecutors said.

Salazar fled on foot but was arrested by Santa Ana police while walking back to the house.

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-- Kim Christensen

 
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