HELENA – A defendant convicted of rape is given a five-year prison sentence.
Ronald Joseph Champagne – found guilty of sexual intercourse without consent by a jury in June – was sentenced Thursday morning in District Court.
Prosecutors say Champagne had sex without the consent of the victim following dinner and drinks in 2011.
The victim told investigators after she and Champagne visited a friend’s home, the next thing she remembered was being at her home, naked, with Champagne having sex with her.
When she started yelling at Champagne he allegedly told her, “Oh be quiet, this will probably be the only time this happens.”
Thursday in court, Deputy County Attorney Stephanie Robles told the court Champagne continues to refuse to take accountability for the incident. She said Champagne maintained during his trial that the sex was consensual.
Robles told the court this case has been extremely difficult for the victim and her family.
Robles said Champagne’s violation of trust left the victim suicidal.
Judge James Reynolds called the case a serious offense and sentenced Champagne to 20 years in the state prison with 15 years suspended.
Judge Reynolds ordered Champagne to undergo Phase One Sexual Offender treatment in prison before he’s eligible for parole.
Once released, Reynolds ordered Champagne to register as a Tier One sex offender.