HARRISON COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - A 36-year-old Gulfport man was sentenced to prison this week after pleading guilty to sexually abusing a 14-year-old girl.
Antonio Rodriquez-Rodgers Ainsworth expressed regret during his sentencing, but Judge Lisa Dodson made sure he understood the impact of his crime.
"You have destroyed your life and almost destroyed hers, but she appears to be strong and she may overcome this," Dodson said during the hearing. "This child has to live with this forever. No sentence can undo that."
Dodson sentenced Ainsworth to 30 years in prison with 15 years suspended, leaving 15 years to serve without the possibility of parole. He will also face five years of probation and have to register as a sex offender when he is released.
"I deeply apologize and take full responsibility. I can't take away the pain I caused her. I'm sorry," Ainsworth told the court.
District Attorney Joel Smith said investigators took up the case in October 2015 after the girl told her family and Gulfport police she had been sexually abused. When police arrested Ainsworth, he admitted to the abuse. He was 35 at the time.
During the sentencing hearing, the victim told the court about the effects the abuse had on her. She also told Ainsworth she did not hate him for what he did, because that would give him power over her.
"The victim showed tremendous courage throughout the process, and thanks to today's guilty plea, she will be spared having to endure the additional trauma of having to testify at trial," said Assistant District Attorney Alison Baker.