The Case of the Indecisive OC Rapist: Miguel Angel Rivera

Orange County's Miguel Angel Rivera first denied that he forcefully raped two women in April and November of 2009, but something provoked him to change his stance.

Superior Court Judge Jonathan S. Fish told Rivera that if he acknowledged his guilt, he would receive close to a 50 percent reduction from the maximum possible prison sentence.

In September 2011, Rivera took the pretrial deal, which included his written acceptance of the details of his sex crimes.

But after Fish ordered him sent to prison the rapist changed his mind again.

Rivera–who is 6-foot-2 and 250 pounds–filed an appeal challenging his convictions.

He argued that . . . well . . . he didn't argue anything except that he didn't like his situation.

On May 31, a three-justice panel at a California Court of Appeal based in Santa Ana scratched their collective heads and dismissed the appeal.

Upshot: Rivera, 26, will continue to serve his nine-year prison sentence at Wasco State Prison.

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CNN-featured investigative reporter R. Scott Moxley has won Journalist of the Year honors at the Los Angeles Press Club; been named Distinguished Journalist of the Year by the LA Society of Professional Journalists; earned six dozen other reporting awards; obtained one of the last exclusive prison interviews with Charles Manson disciple Susan Atkins; won inclusion in Jeffrey Toobin’s The Best American Crime Reporting for his coverage of a white supremacist’s senseless murder of a beloved Vietnamese refugee; launched multi-year probes that resulted in the FBI arrests and convictions of the top three ranking members of the Orange County Sheriff’s Department; and gained praise from New York Times Magazine writers for his “herculean job” exposing entrenched Southern California law enforcement corruption.

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