Rape

Barman pleads no contest in tourist rape

Palacios of Napa faces four years in state prison
2012-12-07T18:53:00Z 2013-01-10T17:09:48Z Barman pleads no contest in tourist rapeKERANA TODOROV Napa Valley Register
December 07, 2012 6:53 pm  • 

A former barman charged with raping a tourist in March at the Napa hotel where he worked may spend more than four years in state prison after reaching a plea agreement with prosecutors.

Henry Tito Palacios, 35, of Napa, on Wednesday agreed to plead no contest to rape and burglary for the March incident at the River Terrace Inn on Soscol Avenue. A no contest plea has the effect of a guilty plea at sentencing.

A sentencing hearing is scheduled for Jan. 8. Under the plea, Palacios will spend four years and four months in state prison and will have to register as a sex offender, according to court documents.

Palacios filed his plea a few days before he was to stand trial for five felonies, including burglary, rape with drugs, rape of an unconscious victim, a sexual act and sexual penetration. Under the plea, three of the five felonies were dismissed by the Napa County district attorney’s office.

Palacios was a barman at the River Terrace Inn in March when, authorities said, he entered a guest room and raped a woman from Texas who was visiting Napa with three friends. According to court testimony and court records, Palacios raped the woman while she slept.

The woman, who is from Grapevine, Texas, testified at a preliminary hearing this summer that she fell ill at dinner after a day of wine tasting. Police said in court filings the woman had a “high level of intoxication.”

She woke up to find Palacios on top of her, forcing her to have sex against her will, according to a court filing and court testimony.  

Palacios remains in custody at the Napa County jail.

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(8) Comments

  1. krusty
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    krusty - December 07, 2012 8:49 pm
    "for the March incident at the River Terrace Inn on Soscol Avenue"

    "Palacios was a barman at the Napa River Inn in March"

    It seems a correction is in order.
  2. napa1957
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    napa1957 - December 07, 2012 11:13 pm
    I wondered about that too! I had remembered that it was the Napa River Inn, so was surprised when I saw River Terrace.
  3. Napa
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    Napa - December 08, 2012 12:31 am
    I'm with "krusty" Which inn is it???
  4. Racerchic707
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    Racerchic707 - December 08, 2012 12:32 am
    This was at River Terrace Inn. There is no bar at Napa River Inn. Previous articles state River Terrace Inn.
  5. naparealestate
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    naparealestate - December 08, 2012 7:24 am
    Four years for a voilent rape - you have to be kidding! Why isn't this guy serving a 20+ year sentence? With good behavior, this guy will be back on the street in months.

    We don't have a lot of serious, violent crime in Napa County. You would think in the rare circumstance that one does occur (and I can think of no crime more violent than raping a stranger - other than murder), our District Attorney would aggressively pursue the maximum penalty possible. This is absolutely pathetic.
  6. Straight Talk
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    Straight Talk - December 08, 2012 9:01 pm
    So, while everyone wonders what is wrong with "US politics", can we have a discussion about our local judicial system? "Palacios filed his plea a few days before he was to stand trial for five felonies, including burglary, rape with drugs, rape of an unconscious victim, a sexual act and sexual penetration.

    "Under the plea, three of the five felonies were dismissed by the Napa County district attorney’s office." Repeat: "Three of the five felonies were dismissed by the Napa County district attorney’s office." And why? To save time and money. Too bad victim. We need to expedite our business. Four years will be reduced to three or less with good behavior.

    So, watch out. Our District Attorney's office thinks three years is sufficient punishment for burglary, rape with drugs, rape of an unconscious victim, a sexual act and sexual penetration.

    Of course, it was not his wife, daughter, or sister or local Napan. Then things might have been different. Business as usual.
  7. Old Time Napkin
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    Old Time Napkin - December 11, 2012 5:43 pm
    Straight Talk, I hate to tell you but the DA is one of your fellow Democrats who's angling to be the next judge in Napa County.
  8. Iamfalconer49
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    Iamfalconer49 - January 12, 2013 7:50 am
    I hope the victim sued the hotel!
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