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Men imprisoned for rape in downtown apartment garage

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SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A man who raped a young woman in the parking garage of a downtown high-rise apartment building last year was sentenced Friday to 10 years behind bars, and another man who served as a lookout was handed a three-year term.

Tresor Ndandu, 30, and Ricky Laroy Phelps, 54, found the woman nearly passed out drunk on June 17, 2012, and took her to the Ten Fifty B apartment complex on B Street while promising to help her, Deputy District Attorney Renee Palermo said.

"She was very vulnerable, reluctant to go with them," Palermo told Judge Louis Hanoian, who ordered the defendants to register as sex offenders for life.

The prosecutor said the three ended up in a garbage disposal area in a parking garage, where the 22-year-old victim was "violently raped" by Ndandu at 3:15 a.m. Phelps acted as a lookout and looked in on them a couple of times, she said.

The judge said he gave Phelps the low term on each count -- both defendants were convicted in March of forcible rape and rape with a foreign object -- and ran the sentences concurrently since Phelps didn't directly rape the woman and had a relatively clean record despite living on the streets for three decades.

"I think Mr. Phelps was far less culpable than Mr. Ndandu," the judge said.

He gave Ndandu the middle term on each count and ran them consecutively. He said broken glass discovered on the floor of the trash room showed the violence of the attack.

Ndandu contended the sex was consensual, but his argument was belied by the glass and injuries to the woman's throat, according to the prosecutor.

Palermo said Ndandu, a native of Africa who crossed the border from Canada to the U.S. illegally, is accused of raping a woman in Port Huron, Mich. That alleged victim testified in the San Diego case.

Authorities in Michigan have yet to decide whether to prosecute him, she said.

 

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