SALT LAKE CITY (Jan. 29, 2015) — In an unusual case involving the sexual assault of an elderly woman by a younger woman, who had not met each other before the sexual assault, Judge Robert Adkins noted the defendant’s disturbing conduct and said that he had never seen anything quite like it in court while serving as a judge or when practicing law. He then sentenced Tina Marie Maestas to prison for the sexual assault on a vulnerable elder adult in Third District Court. Maestas plead guilty to one count of forcible sexual abuse, a second degree felony.
During the proceedings Judge Adkins pointed out the rare combination of the vulnerability of the victim due to age, physical issues and being in distress and the defendant, as a complete stranger, taking advantage and increasing her vulnerability by encouraging and providing medication. Assistant Attorney General Ann Rozycki argued that the question the victim asked at and during the time of the sexual assault of “Why, why are you doing this to me?” is still not answered today.
The Tooele City Police Dept. and the Utah Attorney General’s Office worked collaboratively to investigate allegations of sexual assault and help the victim seek justice. At the time of the incident in August 2012, the senior victim had several physical infirmities and was distraught looking for a lost pet when the defendant, a stranger to the victim, offered to help. She then assisted the victim to her home and encouraged her to take more medication than she was prescribed. Maestas plead guilty to sexually assaulting her. Pursuant to a plea bargain that allowed the victim to not have to testify at trial, she was sentenced to a reduced term of 0-5 years at the Utah State Prison. Maestas will also be listed on Utah’s sex offender registry.
Detective Chris Thompson and victim advocates Lynn Smith and Kaylene Young of Tooele worked with Utah Attorney General’s investigators and Victim Witness Coordinator Tammie Atkin to build the case and offer victim services to the elderly woman. Assistant Attorneys General Kris Knowlton and Ann Rozycki were the state’s prosecutors.
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