Gainesville man convicted of sexual battery in his absence
GAINESVILLE, Fla. (WCJB) - An Alachua County Jury has convicted a man of sexual battery who disappeared after jury selection. Law enforcement agencies are still searching for the man who will spend life behind bars.
Prosecutors say on Dec. 24, 2021, Ian Gabriel Montero-Lopez, who was 18 years old at the time, provided a teen girl with narcotics and sexually battered her. The victim was a minor at the time and attempted to resist the battery.
Montero-Lopez was identified through phone records and a photo line-up. After jury selection for his trial, Montero-Lopez disappeared but the trial continued in his absence.
The jury convicted him of sexual battery on a child between the ages of 12 and 17 as well as sexual battery with the use of physical force.
On Thursday, the victim presented her impact statement to the court. Judge James Colaw then sentenced him to life in prison on the first count and 30 years in prison on the second count to be served concurrently.
Montero-Lopez is wanted on a bench warrant. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is asked to contact law enforcement.
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