Rape Suspect Was Reportedly In The U.S. Illegally, On Probation

| by Nathaly Pesantez

A man charged with breaking into a 64-year-old California woman's house last month and raping and attacking her was in the United
States illegally, police say.

Victor Aureliano Martinez Ramirez, 29, was on probation for committing battery against another woman in May of last year, according to the Santa Maria Times. Methamphetamine was also found in his possession at the time.

Ramirez was reportedly charged twice this year for violating probation, once for carrying a concealed knife and another time for drugs. A Santa Barbara judge sent him to a substance abuse center in Santa Maria following the two incidents.

Marilyn Pharis' home was allegedly broken into by Ramirez and another man, 20-year-old Jose Fernando Villagomez, on July 24 while she was sleeping, according to local news outlet KEYT.

Pharis was beaten with a hammer and sexually assaulted by the two men, according to police. On Aug. 1, Pharis suffered a coronary embolism and died at Marian Regional Medical Center.

Police arrested Ramirez the night of the attack; he was reportedly caught while trying to break into another home. He was being held on $1 million bail.

Ramirez pleaded not guilty to attempted murder, first-degree burglary, assault with intent to commit rape, sexual penetration by foreign object, and resisting an officer, according to the Santa Maria Times. Pharis' autopsy report later this week will determine if Martinez's charges could be upgraded to murder.

The two men are due in court Aug. 13 for a preliminary hearing.

Sources:Santa Barbara News-Press via Fox NewsSanta Maria TimesKEYT

Photo Credit: Santa Maria Police Department/Fox News