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Father and Girlfriend Get Locked Up For Locking Up Daughter

Published: Jun. 26, 2006 at 11:29 PM MST|Updated: Jul. 4, 2006 at 6:43 PM MST
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Rene Valenzuela
Rene Valenzuela
Elizabeth Arguello
Elizabeth Arguello

By J.D. Wallace, KOLD News 13 Reporter

A Tucson man convicted of imprisoning and abusing his daughter will likely die behind bars.

On Monday, a judge announced the sentences for Rene Valenzuela and his live-in girlfriend, Elizabeth Arguello.  Valenzuela received about 99 years in prison, for eleven counts including sexual abuse and kidnapping.  The girlfriend received a four-year sentence after pleading guilty to child abuse.

Investigators said that the couple held Valenzuela's 14-year-old daughter captive for more than a year in a bedroom at their eastside home.  In February 2005, she finally escaped and ran to a friend's home.

Prosecutor Bunkye Chi said that Hon. Frank Dawley's sentence offers closure to the girl and the rest of her family.

Defense Attorney Walter Palser plans on appealing.