Greenfield man gets life sentence for child sexual assault

The Franklin County Justice Center in Greenfield.

The Franklin County Justice Center in Greenfield. STAFF FILE PHOTO/PAUL FRANZ


Staff Writer

Published: 03-15-2024 4:09 PM

Modified: 03-15-2024 7:19 PM

GREENFIELD — A Greenfield man will spend at least the next two decades in prison after a Franklin County Superior Court jury found him guilty of 33 charges, including 21 involving child sexual abuse.

Miguel Rivera, 47, was sentenced on Friday to life in prison, with the possibility of parole in 20 years, for each conviction connecting to seven counts of aggravated rape of child with a 10-year age difference, one count of aggravated rape of child with a five-year age difference and two counts of rape of child with force. He was also given 10-year sentences for each of his 11 charges of indecent assault and battery on a child under 14 and five charges of intimidation of a witness, juror, police or court official.

Rivera, a habitual offender, also received three years for one count of open and gross lewdness and 2½ years for two counts of assault and battery, two counts of malicious destruction of property valued at more than $250, and single counts of attempting to commit a crime and violating an abuse protection order. All the sentences will be served concurrently, meaning at the same time, at the Souza-Baranowski Correctional Center in Lancaster. The trial started on Feb. 20.

Assistant District Attorney Anne Yereniuk, who prosecuted the case with colleague Stephanie Jimenez, spoke before the sentencing was rendered and praised the three victims for their bravery in coming forward, calling them heroes. In advocating for a life sentence, Yereniuk mentioned Rivera’s past crimes and probation violations.

“His criminal record goes back decades,” she told Judge Karen Goodwin.

The three victims’ mother, who learned of the crimes in December 2020, read a victim-impact statement.

“My daughters’ innocence was stolen, as well as their childhoods,” she read.

She said she feels guilty for being unable to protect her children and mentioned trust issues have led to her no longer being able to have romantic relationships.

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Two of the victims opted to have Jimenez read their impact statements. Both detailed struggles with anxiety and post-traumatic stress disorder.

Rivera’s defense attorney, Sean M. Smith, told Goodwin his client understands a severe punishment is necessary but asked the judge for a sentence that would accommodate possible rehabilitation. Rivera gets credit for the 1,182 days he was incarcerated.

Goodwin lauded the victims’ bravery and said she is optimistic they can lead productive and happy lives.