Life in Prison for Sexual Battery

Rafael Gonzalez Santiago, 41, of Clewiston, was adjudicated guilty and sentenced to life in prison for Sexual Battery, Burglary with Assault or Battery, and Robbery with a Weapon. He was
sentenced to 10 years in prison for one count of False Imprisonment, to run concurrently. Santiago was also designated as a Habitual Felony Offender and designated a Sex Offender.

The defendant was found guilty in December, following a trial in Hendry County. It was a non-jury trial at the request of the defense counsel.

The crime happened on June 13, 2019. The Hendry County Sheriff’s Office was called to the scene of a home invasion. The defendant cut the power to a home in Clewiston then entered the residence. He then robbed and sexually battered the elderly occupant.

A man who learned of Gonzalez’s plan, contacted law enforcement as the crime was happening. Deputies got to the scene swiftly and saw Gonzalez running from the home. He was then taken into custody.

Assistant State Attorney Kim Mitton and Assistant State Attorney Trevor Selph prosecuted the case.

Samantha Syoen – Communications Director, State Attorney’s Office