Man gets 65 years for rape


An Arnold man was sentenced to 65 years in prison yesterday for the abduction and rape of a college student he had persuaded to give him a ride in her car.

Ricardo Salvador Blake, 36, was sentenced to life, with all but 55 years suspended, for first-degree rape in the December 1999 attack on the Pasadena woman, who was 18 at the time.

Anne Arundel Circuit Judge Pamela L. North also sentenced Blake to a concurrent 25 years for kidnapping and an additional 20 years, with all but 10 suspended, for carjacking.

Blake, a resident of the 1300 block of Shirleyville Road, was convicted in February of raping the woman after meeting her while she was working in the Anne Arundel Medical Center parking garage in Annapolis. The woman testified during Blake's trial that she had never met him but reluctantly agreed to give him a ride home and that he raped her while they were parked on a dirt road in Arnold.

In the woman's victim impact statement, read in court by her aunt, she wrote that she continues to feel violated and threatened and that the crime has drastically changed her life. She withdrew from her classes at Anne Arundel Community College, sold her car, quit her job and underwent AIDS tests.

"He has taken something from me that can never be replaced - my sense of security and safety," she wrote.

The Sun does not print the names of victims of sexual assault.

North denied a request by Blake's attorney, Joel Katz, that Blake be confined at Patuxent Institution, a state prison and treatment facility for offenders who need psychiatric care. Katz said the institution would provide Blake with mental help in a secure environment that he said is necessary because Blake has testified on behalf of the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency and Annapolis police in at least eight drug cases.

"He's still a victim of the system," Katz said of his client after the sentencing.

Blake, whose lawyer argued throughout the trial that he and the victim had had an affair and that the sexual contact was consensual, vehemently maintained his innocence yesterday while addressing the judge before his sentencing. He said the woman "lied through her teeth" and that if he goes to prison he will be killed because of his testimony in drug cases.

Assistant State's Attorney Laura Kiessling, who prosecuted the case, said the prison system has security mechanisms to deal with Blake's safety concerns. She said Blake committed a "heinous" crime and that his criminal history, including theft and robbery convictions, show that the public needs to be protected from him.

"I believe [North] was trying to fashion a sentence that would make it so he would never get out and do that to someone else," Kiessling said after the hearing. "And I hope this accomplishes that."

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