The weeks-long gasp of freedom for a Methuen child rapist who escaped mid-trial could be his last in half a century after his sentencing this week — and even more charges are expected going forward.
Stephen Corbin Jr., 38, hacked off his ankle bracelet during his child-rape trial in April and got loose, only to be captured in Maine in early May, according to Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan’s office.
The trial plugged right on ahead without him, though, and he was found guilty of child rape. This Thursday — with Corbin firmly back in custody — the soon-to-be-former Methuen resident was sentenced to 40 to 50 years behind bars.
The DA’s office has said new charges are expected after the escape, which already has netted him new counts from Maine authorities, who say he’ll be in trouble for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Corbin cut off his court-ordered GPS monitoring bracelet somewhere along North Street in Andover after the third day of his six-day trial in April, according to the Middlesex DA’s Office.
He was convicted April 14 in his absence of eight counts of aggravated rape of a child for sexually assaulting two teenage girls — one 15 and the other 14 years old — multiple times both at a residence in Lexington and a motel in Bedford.
The DA said he plied the girls with drugs and alcohol before raping them during the events of 2016 and 2017.
He had hired the younger of the two as a babysitter, according to court documents, and continued to hang out with her outside that working relationship — giving her drugs and alcohol and demanding sex in return, or what he termed a “favor for a favor,” according to court documents. The older of the two was a friend of the younger one.
The DA’s office put out a public plea for help in locating Corbin after the rapist had been in the wind for a couple of weeks. Just three days later, on May 6, Maine authorities nabbed him in Farmington.