A 50-year-old Salinas woman was sentenced Tuesday to a year in jail and more than five years of probation in the sexual abuse of a teen boy over a three-year period, according to the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office. A Superior Court judge in Salinas gave Annette Banda a suspended sentence of five years and eight months of supervised probation after she completes a term of 365 days in county jail, Deputy District Attorney Jeannine Pacioni said. Banda was convicted of four felony counts of lewd acts and one felony count of unlawful intercourse with a minor, Pacioni said.
In 2010, Banda met the 14-year-old male victim, who was going to a middle school in Salinas at the time, through her daughter who was attending a different middle school, according to Pacioni. The defendant initiated a sexual relationship with the teen, frequently involving oral sex and later intercourse, mainly inside of her car, prosecutors said. The relationship continued for three years, with the boy a willing participant, until Banda’s husband discovered texts and emails between the woman and the victim, Pacioni said.
The husband notified the boy’s parents who reported it to police, she said. The sentencing by the judge followed the results of a 90-day review of the case by the state Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation, which issued a split recommendation. A corrections officer favored prison time for Banda, but a prison psychologist, the Monterey County Probation Department and the defendant’s private psychologist urged the judge to sentence her to probation, she said. The victim’s parents and the district attorney’s office strongly recommended Banda be sent to state prison without probation, she said.
In addition to a year in jail, Banda will have to serve the supervised probation of five years and eight months, which would become a state prison sentence if she were to violate her probation, according to Pacioni. Banda will also have to register as a sex offender for the remainder of her life. The case was unusual in that there are not many women who are sex offenders to that degree, however, instances of women sexually abusing boys goes underreported, Pacioni said. The perception among some in the legal system and in society as a whole is that males cannot be victims of sexual abuse by women, she said.
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