A 22-year-old man who pleaded guilty in October to breaking into a Desert Hot Springs home and molesting a 10-year-old girl was sentenced to 25 years to life in prison Friday.
Prosecutors charged Angel Lua of Mecca with a series of felonies related to a sexual assault in the 67000 block of Two Bunch Palms Trail just before midnight in June 2017, as well as another attempted sexual assault less than a mile away.
Lua was also charged with burglarizing a homeless shelter in Mecca.
Investigators used his fingerprints left at the first home to connect him to that sexual assault.
The victim, joined by her family, faced her accuser during the sentencing hearing Friday. Lua’s family sat in the opposite row, spurring a series of back-and-forth stare-downs, including at the elevator on the away out.
“I love you, Angel,” an unidentified family member of Lua’s said as he was taken away by sheriff’s deputies after his sentencing.
At the time of the Desert Hot Springs crimes, a bench warrant had been issued for Lua for failing to show up at a December 2016 arraignment on charges of exposing himself to three girls — 9, 11 and 15 — on three separate occasions in or around Mecca earlier that year.
Court records indicate Lua is still facing those charges.
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