William Gilberto Gaspar-Mateo, 37, formerly of 201 Lucille Dr., Dalton, was found guilty on Tuesday by a Whitfield County jury for the rape of a six-year-old child.
The jury of seven men and five women deliberated for 55 minutes before returning their verdict to Superior Court Judge Jim Wilbanks. He sentenced Gaspar-Mateo to serve the remainder of his life in prison. He will be eligible for parole after service of 30 years.
The state’s case was presented by Chief Child Abuse Prosecutor Ben Kenemer with assistance from Daniel Jones currently of the Dalton Police Department, but working for the Whitfield County Sheriff’s Department at the time of this investigation. The Defendant was represented by Dalton attorney Jerry Moncus.
Prosecutor Kenemer called a total of seven witnesses during the two-day trial, including the child victim and her mother, as well as Officer Jones and a number of witnesses from the Department of Family and Children’s Services. The victim did not disclose the abuse for several years, but when she did so, and during her testimony, she was able to provide very graphic details concerning the offense that a child of her age would not have otherwise known, the DA’s office said.
The defendant testified, denying the allegations, but did not call any other witnesses or offer any explanation for why the victim would make these accusations or how she would have been able to give a detailed description of the sexual activity involved given her young age.
After the verdict, three of the jurors plus one of the alternate jurors remained for sentencing. The victim and two of her family members advised Judge Wilbanks how the crime had impacted their lives.
Judge Wilbanks found that Gaspar-Mateo had shown no remorse and that he was a risk to the children of the community.