A former Hackensack firefighter convicted of sexually assaulting a teenage girl has been sentenced to 10 years in prison.
The Record reports that David Fernandez continued to maintain his innocence when the sentence was imposed Friday. Besides his prison term, he also will have to register as a sex offender under Megan's Law.
Bergen County prosecutors say the 41-year-old Fernandez had sex with the then-13-year-old girl in March 2012 at her home in Englewood. They say Fernandez plied the girl with alcohol and assaulted her while her mother, who was recovering from a medical procedure, slept in the room next door.
Fernandez was convicted in May on criminal sexual contact, child endangerment and two counts of sexual assault. But jurors were unable to reach a verdict on two other counts of sexual assault and criminal sexual contact.
Authorities say the girl told her mother about the assault soon after it happened, and the woman then called Fernandez and recorded their conversation before going to the police. Prosecutors said the tape turned out to be a crucial piece of evidence during the trial.
Fernandez had joined the Hackensack Fire Department in October 2010. He was suspended without pay after his arrest and was fired following the guilty verdict