NEW LONDON, Conn. (AP) — One of three Navy sailors accused of sexually assaulting a 12-year-old girl at a house party in Connecticut two years ago has pleaded no contest to reduced charges.
The Day of New London reports that Gabriel Dominguez, of Manteca, an electrician’s mate 3rd Class, received a suspended prison sentence and two years’ probation in New London Superior Court on Thursday for fourth-degree sexual assault, a misdemeanor.
Dominguez and two shipmates on the USS Philadelphia had been charged with sexually assaulting the girl on July 4, 2009, in Groton City.
Jury selection was to begin this week for Dominguez, who acknowledged having sex with the girl but said he thought she was at least 17 years old.
Prosecutor Theresa Anne Ferryman says the cases of two other defendants are expected to be disposed of similarly.
Defense Attorney Anthony Basilica said Dominquez has never been in trouble before and has “a stellar military history and tremendous support from his superiors.”
“It was a bad night for all, in particular for him and his fellow shipmates,” Basilica told The Day.