AUGUSTA — Before Raymond R. Killam was sentenced Wednesday to a minimum of 15 years in prison for raping his then-wife, his victim stood up in court and said, through tears, that she might not be alive today if her former husband hadn’t been jailed.

Killam, 43, who in early August pleaded guilty to two counts of gross sexual assault, was sentenced to 25 years in prison with all but 15 years suspended and four years of probation for the first count. For the second count, he was sentenced to an additional 10 years in prison, all suspended, and another four years of probation.

Standing in the courtroom Wednesday at the Capital Judicial Center, the woman compared her situation to that of Valerie Tieman, the Fairfield woman whose body was discovered Sept. 20 by investigators and whose husband has been charged with murder, allegedly shooting her twice in the head.

“I think if Ray is released he will come to hurt me,” she said. “(Valerie Tieman) could have been me. That could have been me if he (Killam) is allowed to go free.”

The woman stood at the front of the courtroom’s spectator area and faced Justice Michaela Murphy as she made the remarks. She was joined by about 20 friends and family members who had come to the sentencing to support her.

Killam, who wore a green Kennebec County jail uniform and whose feet were shackled, did not turn around during the proceeding; but in lengthy remarks, he spoke of “demons” he’s experienced in the past and apologized to a number of people, including his ex-wife, their children, his parents and young men he had mentored through a religious program in Waterville.

“I’m truly, truly sorry for not being the husband that you needed me to be,” Killam said, also choking up throughout his remarks.

Authorities said Killam raped his ex-wife in April and May 2015.

In addition to his prison sentence, Killam will receive sex offender treatment and won’t be able to own or use firearms. He will be a registered sex offender. Contact with his ex-wife and her children will be restricted. For the first four years of his probation, he will have to wear an electronic monitoring bracelet.

Before announcing the sentencing, the judge emphasized that gross sexual assault can be committed by one spouse against another.

Both Killam’s ex-wife and District Attorney Maeghan Maloney stressed that point in their remarks at the sentencing and urged all victims of sexual assault to come forward to the authorities.

“Rape is always illegal,” Maloney wrote in an email. “Being married does not change that. This sentence shows the state takes this crime seriously, always. … I would like to be sure the public knows that we prosecute marital rape. I want victims to feel comfortable coming forward.”

Across Maine, the number of reported rapes in 2015 increased from the previous year, according to a recent report by the Maine Department of Public Safety, which showed that many other types of crime are decreasing.

Reported rapes increased 4.8 percent last year, with 373 cases, 17 more than in 2014. That reverses three years of decline.

Earlier this week, Cara Courchesne, communications director for the Maine Coalition Against Sexual Assault, said that despite the increase, sexual assault remains the most underreported crime, with roughly 14,000 victims in Maine each year. She said the fact that there were more rape reports in 2015 actually might be a good sign because it might mean more victims are reporting.

In Killam’s case, the state was seeking a 30-year sentence with all but 20 years suspended, said Paul Cavanaugh, deputy district attorney of Kennebec County. The state has dismissed other assault charges on which Killam was indicted

Killam was seeking a basic sentence of around 10 years, Justice Murphy said.

His attorney, Andrew Wright, told Murphy that Killam had entered the guilty pleas under the Alford doctrine, which is not an admission of guilt or innocence but indicates he believes a jury could convict him if the state provided the evidence it says it has.

Before the sentencing, Wright pointed to several mitigating factors in Killam’s case, including work he has done to mentor young men in the Waterville area and his plea to the two counts of gross sexual assault, which prevented the matter from going to trial, a public experience that can be overwhelming for victims of sexual abuse.

Several family members had come to support Killam on Wednesday, including a sister-in-law who delivered positive remarks about his character, and his mother, who remained quiet during the ceremony.

After the sentencing, as he was leaving the court room, he said, “I love you, Ma.”

“I love you,” she responded.

Murphy acknowledged the mitigating factors in Killam’s case, but she also referred to several aggravating factors, including the great effect his sexual assault had on his ex-wife, and his own criminal history: He was previously convicted of sexually assaulting another spouse.

Because of that previous conviction, Cavanaugh argued Killam is “a serial sexual abuser.”

In her remarks Wednesday, his ex-wife spoke of the nightmares she’s had since he assaulted her and of her inability to hold down a job because of the trauma.

“As long as Ray is behind bars, we will be able to heal,” she said, referring to her and her children.

Charles Eichacker — 621-5642

[email protected]

Twitter: @ceichacker


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