Rapist pleads for death penalty, gets life sentence

March 30, 1994|By Alan J. Craver | Alan J. Craver,Sun Staff Writer

A Silver Spring man pleaded for the death penalty but was given life imprisonment yesterday for kidnapping two western Howard County women and raping them in his home while videotaping the 1992 attacks.

William Kirk Evans, a 52-year-old computer analyst who has four children and was married at the time of the incidents, was given the sentence in Howard Circuit Court after he begged his victims and his family for forgiveness.

Evans, who pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree rape in January, was sentenced by Judge Raymond Kane Jr. He is to be sentenced in Montgomery County next month as part of another plea agreement involving two similar attacks in 1990.

"I'm filled with remorse," Evans said, breaking down in tears. "I'm sorry for the emotional and psychological trauma I've caused. . . . I hope in my heart these women will forgive me for my outrageous and egregious acts."

Evans, who twice attempted suicide while at the county Detention Center, told Judge Kane that he would prefer the death penalty to being sentenced to life in prison.

"Let me find peace," he said.

Judge Kane said Maryland law did not permit him to give Evans the death penalty for first-degree rape, for which the maximum sentence is life imprisonment.

Senior Assistant State's Attorney Christine Gage asked Judge Kane to give Evans the maximum sentence. Assistant Public Defender Sam Truette asked the judge to give his client a life sentence with all but 30 years suspended.

Evans was given life sentences for each count of first-degree rape. He will be permitted to serve the sentences simultaneously.

The women, surrounded by friends and relatives, were in the courtroom during the sentencing hearing. Evans' daughter and his first wife also were present.

Ms. Gage read portions of the victims' statements in which they described how the attacks have affected them and their families.

One woman said she had placed a dead-bolt lock on her bedroom door since Evans broke into her home in Dayton, confronted her in her bedroom and forced her to leave with him at gunpoint on May 14, 1992.

The woman, then 19, said she still has nightmares about the attack. "My home is supposed to be a place of safety for me," said Ms. Gage, quoting the woman's statement. "I lost that safe place."

The other woman, 22 at the time of the attack, said in her statement that she cannot forget her young daughter's screams of fear as she saw Evans force his way into their Mount Airy home and force her to leave with him at gunpoint on Nov. 23, 1992.

The woman's daughter, then 4, started to follow, but Evans pushed the girl back, leaving her behind unharmed.

Evans forced his victims to wear sunglasses modified with tissue paper and tape so that they couldn't see as he drove them to his home in the 13000 block of Rhapsody Lane in the Tanglewood section of Silver Spring, where he forced them to perform sex acts and to have intercourse.

He then took the women from his home, driving one to Laytonsville and the other to Scaggsville. He gave each money for cab fare or telephone calls before releasing them.

Evans, a former systems analyst for the United Mine Workers Health and Retirement Fund in Washington, was arrested Dec. 21, 1992, at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda, where he was seeking psychiatric treatment.

Harvey Resnik, a Bethesda psychiatrist who was treating Evans, testified during the hearing that the defendant's actions -- taking the women to his home and documenting the attacks on videotape -- showed how desperately he wanted to be caught.

Evans reported fantasizing since his youth about having sexual partners he could dominate, Dr. Resnik said, and that he first acted on his sexual impulses when he broke into a woman's home and attempted to rape her while he was living in Colorado in 1966.

Evans was arrested in 1971 and given probation for approaching two teen-age girls in Silver Spring, grabbing their hair and attempting to drag them away. He was again given probation for a 1980 incident in New Carrollton in which he attempted to drag a woman away with him.

As part of the probation, Evans was ordered to undergo therapy, Dr. Resnik said. He was given medication to control his sex drive but went off the medication when he remarried in 1985 and didn't have any problems for at least five years.

The psychiatrist said Evans and his wife, who has since left him, had sexual relations at least once or twice a day during their marriage. "But it wasn't enough," Dr. Resnik said. "He continued to act these [impulses] out in an anti-social way."

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