Rapist gets half the prison time prosecutors wanted

Judge Stephen K. Bushong ultimately sentenced Paul Cron to 12.5 years in prison

Paul Cron, 52, shown in a jail booking photo released by the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office.
Paul Cron, 52, shown in a jail booking photo released by the Multnomah County Sheriff's Office.

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — A 52-year-old man was sentenced to 12 1/2 years in prison Tuesday, half the amount of time prosecutors sought for the convicted rapist.

Prosecutors pursued a 25-year prison sentence for Paul Cron, who was convicted of first-degree rape, first-degree sexual abuse, fourth-degree assault and 2 counts each of first-degree sodomy and first-degree burglary in May.

“The defendant presents the Court with the relatively-rare case in which an offender has no realistic potential for rehabilitation,” Multnomah County Deputy District Attorney Jeff Auxier wrote in his sentencing memorandum. “Over 4 decades, the defendant has repeatedly committed violent felonies for which he refuses to acknowledge any responsibility… [he] must be incapacitated for 300 months, because it is the only way to ensure that the defendant will not further victimize the public.”

Criminal defense attorney Lisa Ludwig sought a prison sentence of 100 months, or just over 8 years. She argued Cron “was a very mentally ill and substance-abusing man when he came into contact with [the victim].” She said he has “shown himself to be capable to responding to treatment even without making admissions of wrongdoing (committed by another ‘part’ of his dissociated personality.”

A pre-sentence investigation conducted by the county found Cron as a “low-moderate” risk of being charged or convicted with another sex crime in the future.

Cron “has always denied sexually assaulting [the woman] and he continues to maintain his innocence,” Ludwig wrote. Cron told the investigator conducting the pre-sentence report he had “no memory of that night but I know I didn’t rape anyone!”

But according Auxier’s memo, “not only has [Cron] been repeatedly violent, but he has also repeatedly shown that he cannot be supervised. Since [his] 2002 conviction for Burglary 1, the defendant has been found in violation of probation or parole 10 times and has shown no interest in rehabilitation.”

Cron was first investigated in March 2014 when the victim told a detective with the Portland Police Bureau’s Sex Crimes Unit he had raped her. The woman told the detective she was having drinks with Cron and his girlfriend on his boat. The woman said when she went back to her boat, which was docked in the same marina, Cron followed her inside and sexually assaulted her.

A sexual assault nurse conducted an examination and noted bruising and severe injuries to the woman’s body, according to court documents.

During an interview with the detectives, Cron claimed no part of his body, or the victim’s body, had ever touched. In May 2014, detectives received information from the OSP crime lab “that contradicted” Cron’s claims.

Cron will remain in custody in Multnomah County until he is transferred to the Oregon Department of Corrections.

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