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Fantasy Man Sentenced to 15 Years for Rape, Attempted Rape by Fraud

June 20, 1996 GMT

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) _ The so-called Fantasy Man was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years in prison for tricking women into having sex blindfolded by telling each one he was her boyfriend.

Businessman Raymond Mitchell III, 45, was sentenced for rape by fraud and attempted rape by fraud. The defense had claimed the sex was consensual.

Prosecutors said Mitchell called hundreds of women over the years, most of whom hung up on him. Of the 30 women who reported Fantasy Man encounters to police, eight said they had sex with the caller.

One woman has said she had sex with Fantasy Man twice a week over two months in 1992 because she thought he was her boyfriend. She said she discovered he wasn’t when her blindfold slipped off.

Mitchell appeared to be unmoved by the sentence, but his mother _ hooked up to a portable oxygen tank _ sobbed as family members and friends led her from the courtroom.

Criminal Court Judge Ann Lacy Johns described Mitchell as living two distinct lives: a hard-working family man by day, and a man who engaged in ``perverted sexual behavior″ at night.

``I feel it’s a fair sentence and I’m happy with that,″ said the attempted rape victim. ``I think Mr. Mitchell obviously feels he doesn’t need any psychiatric help, but I don’t think he’ll ever stop unless he’s in prison or gets psychiatric help.″

Defense attorney C. Edward Fowlkes had argued the women knew they were engaging in sex play with a stranger, but subsequently called police for some reason.