The family of an Elyria girl who had sex with a 27-year-old man posing as a teenager said they were devastated to learn the man won’t serve any time in jail.
According to court records, Ashraf Rizek of Fairview Park pleaded guilty to a third-degree felony count of unlawful sexual conduct with a minor on April 19.
Rizek posed as a 16-year-old on the dating app “Meet Me” where he started talking to a 15-year-old girl from Elyria and arranged to pick her up from her home on Sept. 2.
“They were going on a date,” the girl’s mother told News 5. “She thought it was normal.”
After the girl failed to return home that night, her mother contacted Elyria police.
The next morning, the teen said she was dropped off in a parking lot without any way to get home. She walked to a friend’s house where she was able to contact her mother.
The victim said that, eventually, Rizek changed his story, telling her he was 20 years old.
Officials administered a rape kit at University Hospitals Elyria Medical Center and police took possession of the girl’s phone.
It was an investigator who called the girl’s mother and told her Rizek’s actual age.
“We were horrified,” she said. “My daughter got physically sick.”
A third-degree felony of this type is punishable by up to 5 years in jail and a maximum of $10,000.
But Rizek received no jail time and was instead sentenced to 2 years of community control.
He’s required to register as a tier II sex offender every 180 days for the next 25 years and he’s required to pay a $360 fine.
“That’s it? It’s a slap on the wrist,” she said. “He took advantage of my daughter."
Legal experts tell News 5 Rizek’s spotless criminal record prior to the incident was likely taken into account.
Still, the girl and her family feel like the sentence is too lenient and this precedent will do nothing to stop other adults from preying on teens online.
“I feel that he’s just walking as a free man out on the streets,” the victim said.
News 5 reached out to Rizek for comment but as of Monday night did not receive a response.