Holyoke man gets five years for sexual assault of girl, 13

Miguel Rivera, 49, of Holyoke, Massachusetts accepted a plea bargain in December and was convicted of second-degree sexual assault and risk of injury to a child in a single incident in Enfield, Connecticut on Dec. 10, 2020.

He entered the plea bargain under the Alford doctrine, meaning that he didn’t admit guilt but acknowledged that the prosecution’s evidence was sufficient for a conviction at trial.
The plea bargain permitted a prison term as long as five years but gave Rivera’s lawyer, Angel A. Lugo, the right to argue for as little as the nine-month mandatory minimum prison sentence.

At Wednesday’s sentencing, Lugo cited Rivera’s lack of a previous criminal record and his schizophrenia.

Rivera was twice found incompetent to stand trial, in March and June of last year, court records show. But, after efforts to restore him to competency at the maximum-security Whiting Forensic Hospital in Middletown, both sides agreed in early September that he was competent.

Rivera is incarcerated at the Garner Correctional Institution in Newtown, which specializes in “care and treatment for adult male offenders with significant mental health issues,” according to its website.

Judge David P. Gold ordered Rivera to serve 10 years of probation after he completes the five-year prison term, with the possibility of up to 10 more years behind bars if he violates release conditions, court records show.
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