A Trinity County man was charged with rape and torture, among other charges. Prosecutors allege it was a twisted plot for revenge.
The incident happened on or around April 1, according to the Trinity County District Attorney's Office. The suspect was arrested that day.
"It's about as serious a crime as we would see in Trinity County," said Deputy District Attorney Eric Heryford.
Early that morning in the small town of Hayfork 45-year-old Alfonso Castellanos-Ferrer allegedly tortured, raped and attempted to murder a teenage, juvenile girl. The victim was awoken in her bedroom by the suspect, in a crime that lasted nearly two hours.
"Initial reports indicate the defendant basically tortured the victim for a couple of hours. It was a prolonged incident,” Heryford said. “Real serious sexual assault allegations."
The suspect allegedly entered the victim’s house and brought along torture materials.
Heryford said Thursday the victim was bound and choked. He said Castellanos-Ferrer knew the victim and the layout of the property.
"Somehow he got into the home and went to the victim's bedroom,” Heryford said. "We don't know how long he planned to continue assaulting her. But she was pretty brutally beaten. So she was very fortunate that the family was able to respond and law enforcement to really save her."
Heryford said it was a twisted revenge plot against someone close to the victim. He said the young girl was briefly able to wake up an adult in the other room to get help, who then called law enforcement.
In a complaint filed by the District Attorney’s Office, nine felony charges are being levied against the suspect. Castellanos-Ferrer faces charges of premeditated murder, torture, forcible rape, sodomy, and sexual penetration with a foreign object, among other counts.
“He went into the house, and what's charged as a burglary is he went into the house with intent to commit a felony,” Heryford said.
Heryford said Thursday they do not yet have DNA testing results, but have a good victim's statement - enough to bring those allegations.
Prosecutors will likely seek a permanent imprisonment.
"We're still early in the process but based on the seriousness of the case I think that would be a likely goal in this case,” Heryford said. “This is someone - if we're able to prove the case - he should never be out of custody again."
The victim received immediate medical care and was taken to the hospital in Weaverville for examination.
Heryford believes this was an isolated incident but the Trinity County Sheriff's Office is working to rule out other possibilities for additional victims and is seeing if others will be coming forward.
Heryford said the defendant may be in the country illegally so there is also an immigration hold on him.
Castellanos-Ferrer is being held without bail in the Trinity County Jail. He will be in court April 30 to enter a plea.