Man sentenced to prison for repeatedly raping girl for years

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IDAHO FALLS — A man who raped a young girl repeatedly from the time she was 9-years-old to when was 12-years-old was sentenced to 32 years in prison on Wednesday.

Bryan Lee Brown, 37, was sentenced to 12 years fixed with 20 years indeterminate for felony lewd conduct with a minor under 16.

Jason Gustaves, Brown’s attorney, argued that Brown should have been sent on a rider program to receive sex offender treatment partly based on the fact that Brown was subjected to a significant amount of sexual, physical and mental abuse as a child and that Brown has a learning disability.

Brown’s sister testified on Brown’s behalf prior to sentencing. She said Brown told her about the abuse he sustained as a child and mentioned that Brown dropped out of school in eighth grade. She said his family “was his whole world.”

The victim’s mother also testified on behalf of Brown. She said she was surprised when she found out what he had done to her daughter and that the crimes didn’t seem in his nature.

She said she felt stuck in the middle of the situation.

“If I take one side, I look bad on the other and vice versa,” she said.

Bonneville County Chief Deputy Prosecuting Attorney John Dewey recommended a sentence of no more than 10 years fixed and 25 years indeterminant. The recommendation was consistent with a plea agreement where Brown would plead guilty as charged and in exchange, the prosecution would recommend no more than 10 years fixed.

District Judge Darren Simpson noted a portion of the psychosexual evaluation where Brown said he feels that he is a victim.

“He places responsibility of his behavior on having been molested as a child himself, being badly treated, having problems as a child with his family, not getting to satisfy his sexual curiosity as a youth and having too much alcohol and drugs,” Simpson read from the report. “He holds his victim responsible for his sexual behavior because she kept coming over to see him.”

Brown was visibly shocked by the 12 years fixed sentence and seemed to have trouble acknowledging that he understood the sentence. Brown said he was not expecting that sentence and that he was just there “to own up to my part.”

“Look at me,” Simpson said after asking multiple times if Brown understood. “Do you understand you are going to prison for 12 years before you are eligible for parole? That’s the sentence I’ve imposed.”

Brown eventually acknowledged that he understood.

“I am sorry to this community,” Brown said prior to being sentenced. “I’m sorry for the families. I really am.”

Brown was arrested in Oct. 2017. Court documents show the victim told her middle school counselor that he had raped her nearly every weekend for the past three years while at a relative’s home. She said she felt forced to allow the abuse because she didn’t want to get in trouble.

A sexual assault nurse examiner revealed the victim had significant scarring in her genitals – something unusual for a 12-year-old that could indicate extensive sexual activity.

During sentencing, Simpson referenced that Brown would offer the victim rewards for sexual acts and threatened to hurt her if she told anyone.

Dewey noted a civil protection order has been issued prohibiting the victim’s mother from seeing her daughter because the child’s father was afraid the mother would take her and leave the state.

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