Beverly Man Sentenced to 25 Years to Life for Rape
Judge Howard Whitehead sentenced Troy Platt, 26, of Beverly, to serve 25 years to life for raping a woman at gunpoint. An Essex Superior Court jury found him guilty of two counts of aggravated rape and assault and battery with a dangerous weapon on Friday afternoon following a four day trial. Platt’s mother, Audrey Farmer, 47, also of Beverly, was arraigned after today’s sentencing hearing on witness intimidation charges after she told the victim to “watch your back” after Friday’s verdict.
Essex Assistant District Attorney Kristen Buxton proved that on May 18, 2008, Platt forced the victim into a wooded area off of Bridge Street in Beverly as she was walking home after an evening out and forcibly raped her at gunpoint. The victim was unable to identify Platt but DNA evidence linked him to the crime.
In her sentencing argument, Buxton recommended 35 to 50 years on one rape count and life on the other. She said that this crime is almost without precedent in Essex County. ”While we have far too many sexual assaults in Essex County, none of them are of this nature. This crime is uniquely horrifying,” Buxton said. “Every woman has the right to walk down the street even after she has had a few drinks. Every woman has the right to the integrity of their own body.”
She also read the victim’s impact statement in which the victim described how she has been “scarred emotionally for the rest of my life. “Since May 18, 2008, I am afraid to walk alone.” The victim, who testified in the trial, was provided services and support from Essex Victim Witness Advocate Deborah Dunn.
Buxton then went downstairs to District Court to arraign Farmer on intimidation of a witness charges. Judge Robert Brennan ordered her held on $10,000 cash bail on that charge and her bail was revoked in a pending assault which means she must go to jail for 60 days.
Essex District Attorney Jonathan W. Blodgett commended the victim for her courage as well as the sentence. “Rape is a particularly appalling crime and this rape, done at gunpoint, is so disturbing that it demands a severe sentence. It sends a clear and strong message to this victim that what happened to her is not her fault but is the sole responsibility of the defendant,” Blodgett said. “It is unacceptable that this victim was threatened after the jury announced its verdict. This behavior will not be tolerated and will prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.”
Mr. Platt was represented by Attorney John Apurzzese. He will serve his sentence at MCI Cedar Junction and received 662 days credit for time already served awaiting trial.
Buxton praised the work of the Beverly Police Department, particularly Det. Jeff Liacos and Officer Darlene Prinz.