Seal Harbor man sentenced to 10 years for rape

This story was published on Oct. 04, 2002 on Page B2 in edition 3 of the Bangor Daily News

ELLSWORTH – A Seal Harbor man convicted of raping his girlfriend twice last spring, once at knifepoint, was sentenced Wednesday to the maximum 10 years in prison.

Raymond Durgin, 30, waived indictment and pleaded guilty in July in Hancock County Superior Court to sexually assaulting his girlfriend at the Seal Harbor home they shared last April, according to court documents.

On Wednesday, Justice Ellen Gorman sentenced Durgin to the maximum sentence for gross sexual assault, according to Hancock County Assistant District Attorney Mary Kellett and Durgin’s attorney, Jeff Toothaker of Ellsworth.

Durgin did not address the court at his sentencing but did write letters of apology for the court and the victim, Kellett and Toothaker said Thursday in separate interviews. Durgin has consistently maintained, however, that he would not have done what he did if the woman had agreed to have sex with him, Kellett said.

The victim told Gorman at the sentencing that she has had nightmares and medical problems because of the attacks, according to Kellett.

On April 8 at the Wildwood Road house they shared, Durgin attacked the woman after she returned home from her job and he accused her of withholding sex from him, according to documents filed in court by Lt. Jason Lovejoy of the Mount Desert Police Department. Durgin slapped her repeatedly, grabbed her and groped her before letting her go and leaving for work, Lovejoy said.

The next day, Durgin attacked her again at their home, holding a foot-long kitchen knife and threatening to kill her with it if she did not submit to him, Lovejoy said. The victim called police after the second attack, after Durgin had gone to work, he said. When police questioned him that evening, the defendant told them he had raped and threatened the woman, he said.

Durgin initially was charged with two counts of gross sexual assault and one of criminal threatening. Prosecutors dropped one of the gross sexual assault charges in exchange for Durgin’s guilty plea, according to court documents.

According to Kellett, the judge also imposed Wednesday a six-year term of supervised release for Durgin after he gets out of prison because he has two previous felony sex offense convictions and has shown little effort to reform his behavior.

“At this point, there’s nothing anybody’s been able to do to get him to deal with his issues,” Kellett said. Durgin was convicted twice previously of unlawful sexual contact, once as a juvenile and once in the early 1990s as an adult, and served three years in jail for those crimes, she said.

Durgin’s supervised-release provision is not probation, according to Kellett, because Gorman did not suspend any portion of his sentence.

Durgin still must abide by probationlike conditions, such as undergoing sexual offender treatment and counseling and not having any contact with the victim. He could go back to prison for 40 months if he violates any of those conditions after he is released, Kellett said.

Toothaker said Durgin’s previous sex convictions and his confession to police led his client to plead guilty. He said the maximum sentence imposed by Gorman was not a surprise. “Ray has got some problems,” Toothaker said. “After we found out his entire past, [10 years] was expected.”