Haverhill Man, 54, Pleads Guilty to Raping Disabled Woman, Sentenced to Prison Up to 2.5 Years

(File photograph.)

A 54-year-old Haverhill man admitted Monday he raped an intellectually disabled woman who had been placed in his home by an adult foster care agency.

Joseph Gagnon pleaded guilty to rape, two counts of indecent assault and battery on a person over 14 and permitting abuse on a disabled person at a change of plea hearing in Lawrence Superior Court.

Judge C. William Barrett sentenced him from two to two and one-half years in state prison, followed by two years of probation. While on probation, Barrett ordered the defendant to stay away from and have no contact with the victim, comply with the restraining order, stay away from the Target store in Haverhill, undergo a sex offender evaluation and seek treatment deemed necessary, comply with the Sex Offender Registry Board, and remain drug free with random screens.

Essex Assistant District Attorney Jessica Strasnick represented the Commonwealth. She was assisted by Essex Victim Witness Advocate Michelle DeFeo and Haverhill Police Detective Penny Portalla.

Gagnon was represented by attorney Scott Gleason.

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