Babies 'R' Us kidnapper, rapist gets life behind bars

Babies 'R' Us kidnapper, rapist gets life behind bars »Play Video
Anthony Ray Graham Jr. sits in court during his sentencing on kidnapping and rape convictions.
BAKERSFIELD, Calif. -- Anthony Ray Graham Jr. will spend the rest of his life in prison for kidnapping and raping a woman last year.

He was sentenced Wednesday in Kern County Superior Court.

The court also heard Graham allegedly threatened the victim and her family while he was in jail.

Graham abducted a 31-year-old woman and her 11-month-old child from the parking lot of Babies "R" Us on Rosedale Highway in January 2009.

He forced the woman to drive to an ATM to withdraw money and then raped her in her car while they were parked at the nearby Fruitvale Junior High School.

During sentencing, prosecutor Lisa Green read the victim's words from her impact statement.

"He stole so much more than just money and sex from me that day," Green read to the court. "He stole and broke a part of my spirit. I wake up every morning less than I was before."

The victim said she faces almost daily reminders of the attack and said the effects have been extensive and "nightmarish" for both herself and her family.

The victim also revealed that Graham allegedly wanted to arrange an attack after his incarceration.

"He threatened to get a letter out of jail to contacts, and he asked that they kill me and my husband," she said.

Green confirmed to reporters that another inmate in the Lerdo jail got that letter and turned it over to law enforcement.

"The victim and her family have had to live with that since November 2009," Green said after the sentencing. She said Graham apparently hoped to get the message to "associates" in the Los Angeles area.

Green said no charges were filed regarding the attempted attack, because there wasn't enough time to prove Graham had written the letter. But, she's convinced it was authentic.

"There's absolutely no doubt in my mind that that was a credible threat," Green said.

Graham was convicted last month on two kidnapping charges, a charge of rape by force or fear and a charge of oral copulation by use of force or injury.

Graham won't be retried on two charges that resulted in a hung jury. They were sexual penetration with force and possession of a firearm by a felon.

"I can't conjure a more cruel and senseless scenario," the judge said while handing down the sentence.

Graham was sentenced to 50 years to life in prison on two of the counts, life with possibility of parole on another count and more than 20 years on the final count. He must also register as a sex offender.

"That's about 70 years," the prosecutor said. "He just turned 30, so I don't think he'll be ever getting out of prison."

Defense attorney Paul Cadman said he would file an appeal. He and Graham hope for a new trial.

"He's confident that his appeal will be found to be valid," Cadman said.

The victim's message had pleaded for justice and a tough sentence for Graham.

"Many pieces of me were ruthlessly stolen without provocation, and I'll never be the same," she wrote in her letter to the court. "He is not repentant at all, and my family, as well as the public, will not be safe if he is ever released from prison."