(clockwise from left) Angela Garcia, Josue Isai Ramirez-Aguilar, Francisco Palencia, Jose Santos Carranza-Castro and Ana Barbara Lopez-Huinil were all charged in a violent June 2017 home invasion. All but Palencias took plea deals from the Gwinnett County District Attorney's Office. Palencia's trial is ongoing.
Photo: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office
Photo: Gwinnett County Sheriff's Office

Gwinnett man ordered assault, rape of woman from prison

A Norcross man ordered the brutal assault and rape of a woman while he was in prison, a member of the Gwinnett County District Attorney’s Office said Friday.

Jose Carranza-Castro, 38, pleaded guilty Oct. 15 to planning the May 2017 attack on the woman. The victim was scalded with boiling water, shocked with a stun gun and raped by two male teens in front of one of her sons. 

Carranza-Castro was sentenced to life in prison. 

READ | Cops: Teen intruders use stun guns, rape Gwinnett mom in front of son

MORE | Teen ‘lookout’ marks 4th arrest in brutal Gwinnett rape case

Josue Isai Ramirez-Aguilar, now 20, was identified by police as one of the assailants. He was sentenced to life with 25 years to serve in prison after he pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count each of aggravated battery, kidnapping with bodily injury and criminal attempt to commit burglary, court documents show. 

The other alleged assailant, 19-year-old Francisco Palencia, is currently on trial for charges including rape, aggravated sodomy and home invasion. 

Ramirez-Aguilar and Palencia were wearing dark clothes and ski masks when the victim found them in the kitchen of her apartment in unincorporated Tucker. She tried to get away from them and protect her children, but one of the men threw two pots of boiling water on her, severely burning her shoulder, a police report said.

The pair shocked the victim with stun guns and forced her into her bedroom, where they made her perform oral sex and raped her, according to the police report. One of her sons wandered into the room during the attack and witnessed the sexual assault; the other was restrained in a portable car seat. 

Police believe Ramirez-Aguilar and Palencia gained access to the apartment through a screened-in porch, which was cut open before the attack. The cut screen also allowed the victim’s German shepherd to run away, the police report said.

Angela Garcia, 19, of Duluth, served as a lookout during the attack, and Ana Lopez-Huinil, 17, of Doraville, drove the group to the victim’s apartment, according to police. 

Garcia pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count of criminal attempt to commit burglary, and will serve 15 years in prison. Lopez-Huinil also pleaded guilty to two counts of burglary and one count of criminal attempt to commit burglary. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison, according to court documents. 

Ramirez-Aguilar, Palencia, Garcia and Lopez-Huinil believed they would be paid to carry out the attack, according to the DA’s office. All but Palencia were sentenced Oct. 15.

Carranza-Castro planned the attack while in prison outside of the state of Georgia. Previously, he had been at Riverbend Correctional Facility in Milledgeville on a conviction for possession of cocaine with intent to distribute, and was released in 2014. 

Palencia’s trial will continue into next week. The defendants who already pleaded guilty are expected to testify against him. 

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On clerk said the man seemed a little forgetful

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