A judge declined to lower bail for a man accused of raping a woman on North Whidbey a year ago.
Carlos A. Martinez, 25, appeared in Island County Superior Court Monday for a preliminary appearance. He pleaded not guilty to rape in the second degree with forcible compulsion.
A $100,000 arrest warrant was issued for Martinez last Wednesday. He turned himself in the following day.
In court, Martinez’s attorney, Teresa Keene, argued that Martinez should be released on his personal recognizance, to the custody of his parents or on electronic home monitoring.
Keene said Martinez hasn’t been accused of any violent crimes before and doesn’t pose a danger to the community.
She said the current charge against her client is “more like an allegation of a date rape.”
“It’s not a matter of someone who is out roaming for more victims,” she said.
Keene said the warrant for Martinez is for a seven-year-old theft case.
“He’s just a dumb kid who went home to see his mom,” she said, explaining why Martinez left Utah without court permission.
Island County Chief Criminal Prosecutor Eric Ohme argued that Martinez should be held on $100,000 bail. Ohme pointed out that Martinez is accused of a serious sex crime and is facing a potential life sentence, which makes him a flight risk.
Ohme also said there’s also a likelihood that Martinez would intimidate the victim. He said someone connected to Martinez contacted the young woman and asked to meet with her.
Judge Alan Hancock denied the defense motion to reduce bail. He pointed out that Martinez is facing a standard range sentence of 78-102 months in prison, with the maximum of life in prison.
The possibility of a lengthy sentence, together with his flight from Utah, creates a likelihood that Martinez wouldn’t appear for future court hearings if released without bail.
He also said Martinez represents a danger based on the nature of the crime.
Martinez is accused of raping a young woman on a North Whidbey beach in August of 2017, according to the police report.
The woman said she repeatedly rebuffed Martinez’ advances. She said Martinez held her down in the sand and raped her, the report states.
Martinez denied raping or having sex with the woman. DNA evidence obtained from the rape kit matched Martinez’s DNA profile, according to the report.