WSU student convicted of rape by jury

MADYSEN MCLAIN, Evergreen assistant news editor

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A jury found a 23-year-old WSU student guilty of third-degree rape after deliberating for an hour at the Whitman County Superior Court on Monday.

Antonio Abonza was found guilty of a rape which occurred on April 14, according to a Whitman County Prosecutor’s Office press release.

Evidence presented in the trial showed that the victim was a woman living in a Pullman apartment, according to the press release. Abonza visited her and had intercourse with the victim after she said, “No.”

Abonza pleaded guilty to the trespass charge which occurred in May, when he was found hiding in the victim’s bathroom in the same apartment the rape took place.

Chief Deputy Prosecutor Dan LeBeau said Abonza has been held in custody since Sept. 21.

Abonza has prior convictions of a DUI and making a false statement to a public servant, according to the press release. His current conviction, a class C felony, could land him in jail from six to 12 months. The trespassing gross misdemeanor could be a sentence of up to one year in jail, according to the press release.

“I’m very glad the jury held [Abonza] accountable,” LeBeau said.

The WSU student directory still has Abonza listed as a student. He will be sentenced during a hearing on Dec. 21.