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Judge delivers sentence to up to 26 years in rape case

A Dillsburg man convicted of raping a woman in State College was sentenced to 10 to 26 years in prison Thursday.

Christopher A. Ryerse, 21, was convicted in January of one count of rape of an unconscious victim and one count of sexual assault, both felonies, and one count of indecent assault of an unconscious victim, a misdemeanor.

The charges stem from an April 2013 incident in which Ryerse, then an employee at Little Caesars Pizza in Dillsburg, and a fellow employee came to State College to assist the local Little Caesars’ employees in new training procedures, according to Centre County District Attorney Stacy Parks Miller’s office.

The victim was a friend of the local manager and met to socialize with a group of employees after the store closed. She became ill after having drinks. Friends helped her to the bathroom but later left. Ryerse moved the victim to a bed and removed her clothes while she was unconscious. The victim awoke naked, her clothes on the floor, Ryerse in the bed beside her.

The victim contacted State College police, turning over her undergarments. Testing found fluids belonging to Ryerse. Police recorded a conversation between Ryerse and the victim, in which he denied having sex with her, blaming another co-worker. When interviewed by police, he gave a fake name as an alibi for the time of the rape.

“Today at sentencing, the defendant claimed he did not have complete control over what he had done,” said Parks Miller. “However, it was not a lack of control that forced him to rape an unconscious woman, but a lack of personal responsibility, buried within an opportunistic predator. We are pleased the victim’s voice was heard by the jury and the judge and that justice was served.”

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