[UPDATED with Sentencing Details, Disturbing Testimony:] Anthony Nicholas Orban, Ex-Westminster Cop, Guilty of Violent Rape

See update No. 3 at end of this post for details on sentencing and a disturbing testimony that undercut Anthony Nicholas Orban's Zoloft defense.

See update No. 2 at end of this post for details on the jury determining Orban was sane when he kidnapped and raped a waitress at the nose of his Westminster Police service firearm in 2010.

See update No. 1 at end of this post for details on guilty verdict.

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ORIGINAL POST, JUNE 12, 4:32 P.M.: Anthony Nicholas Orban, who was fired as a Westminster Police detective after being charged with kidnapping and raping a single mom abducted as she left her waitress job, has one fewer juror to convince he's innocent by reason of insanity.

That's the male juror a judge dismissed today because the fellow wanted to thank Orban for his service in the U.S. Marines.

This all played out very quickly today at West Valley Superior Court in Rancho Cucamonga, where closing arguments in the case against Irvine resident Orban concluded this morning and the jury went into deliberations before noon.

This afternoon, Judge Shahla Sabet appointed an alternate juror to replace the male juror who was deemed too emotional to make an unbiased decision. The jury has been instructed to find Orban innocent or guilty of the crimes. If he is found guilty, the same jury must consider whether he was insane at the time of the crimes, as his defense contends.

The stakes are high:
if Orban is found not guilty by reason of insanity, he would likely receive an indefinite sentence in a state mental hospital as opposed to a life term in state prison. That conceivably means he could later be released from the hospital following treatment.

Anthony Nicholas Orban, Ex-Westminster PD Detective, Blames Rape of Waitress on Meds for Stress From Iraq War

The young mother had just left her job at the Dave & Buster's at the Ontario Mills shopping mall the afternoon of April 3, 2010, when she was grabbed by a stranger who forced her into her SUV, drove her to the lot of a Fontana business and choked her, repeatedly slapped her, punched her, rubbed her face with a handgun, gagged her with the gun barrel, twice threatened to kill her, ordered her at gunpoint to give him oral sex and photographed her with a cell phone while raping her.

A text message the attacker sent with the photo read, "Look what I'm doing." But then he got a call back on his cell phone that seemed to snap him out of the ultraviolence and cause him to apologize profusely to his victim.

Police Report Details Rape Allegations Against Westminster Police Detective

After he got dressed and left the vehicle, she bolted out and asked an employee at a nearby business to call the police. When cops arrived at the scene, they did not find the attacker but they did find Orban's Westminster Police service revolver in the SUV. His arrest swiftly followed.

It turned out Orban had been drinking in Ontario that day with Jeffrey Thomas Jelinek, a Chino state prison guard who pleaded guilty to his participation in the crimes and agreed to testify against Orban in exchange for a sentence of five years and four months in prison.

Shortly after charges were filed, Orban's attorney James Blatt did not dispute his client abducted and raped the then-25-year-old waitress, claiming the detective suffered a "psychotic break from reality" brought on by being over-prescribed the anti-depressant Zoloft and the anti-seizure medication Neurontin.

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This "Zoloft defense" foreshadowed a defense at trial claiming Orban is an honorable member of the community battling Post Traumatic Stress Disorder he has suffered since serving as a combat Marine in Iraq.

San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney Debbie Ploghaus has asked jurors to focus solely on the facts of the case, which finds Orban charged with eight felony counts.

UPDATE NO. 1, JUNE 13, 1:37 P.M.: The "Zoloft Defense"--which is apparently the new millennium version of the "Twinkie Defense"--did not work for Anthony Nicholas Orban, at least during the first phase of his jury trial, as the former Westminster Police detective was found guilty this morning of kidnapping and raping a waitress at gunpoint.

The San Bernardino County jury now gets to decide whether the Irvine resident was sane at the time of the April 2010 attack. That phase of the trial is scheduled to begin Tuesday.

The defense claims Orban was over-prescribed Zoloft to treat Post Traumatic Stress Disorder he has suffered while serving as a combat Marine in Iraq, and that he sustained a psychotic break that effectively rendered him unconscious when he kidnapped the woman in the Ontario Mills mall parking lot and raped her at a Fontana self-storage lot.

He was off-duty from his OC cop job at the time, but Orban stuck his service revolver in the waitress' mouth while forcibly raping her in her SUV.

UPDATE NO. 2, JUNE 26, 12:33 P.M.: Despite Anthony Nicholas Orban's "Zoloft Defense," a San Bernardino County jury today found the Irvine resident was sane when he kidnapped and raped a waitress at the nose of the ex-Westminster Police detective's service firearm.

Orban's attorney argued that his client could not be held responsible for his actions because the antidepressant Zoloft he was prescribed to deal with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder caused by his Iraq War service had rendered him effectively unconscious at the time of the attack.

Details on sentencing to follow . . .

UPDATE NO. 3, JUNE 26, 2:48 P.M.: Anthony Nicholas Orban is scheduled to be sentenced on Aug. 9, when he could be sent away to state prison for life.

Meanwhile, San Bernardino County Deputy District Attorney Debbie Ploghaus revealed why she and, by extension, the jury did not buy the former Westminster Police detective's Zoloft defense.

Orban had been drinking with his prison guard pal Jeff Jelinek before the cop kidnapped a waitress who'd just ended her shift at an Ontario Mills mall restaurant and took her at gunpoint to a Fontana self-storage lot where he brutally raped her.

Jelinek, who cut a plea deal to accessory charges in exchange for testifying, told the jury Orban had told him he would get turned on by reading rape reports.

Ploghaus says she did not believe temporary insanity brought on by the over-prescription of Zoloft caused Orban to go temporarily insane and on a black-out rampage. Alcohol and his own kinky desires were the cause, according to Ploghaus, who says in an Associated Press report, "He had this whole other side of him that nobody saw."

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20 comments
Harry
Harry

They could let him off it he claims self defense. That's how it works with police homicides.

Harry
Harry

MAYBE YOU CAN DO THAT IN AFGHANISTAN TO LITTLE GIRLS maybe that is what you call a flashback trying to relive your crimes but you can't come home and pull that crap!!!

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

so only he was crazy, not the partner?

Jn Brown
Jn Brown

did the juror send out a love note to the  Marine serial killer just caught stabbing hobos?  How about the Army vet CO in Arizona that just capped his wife.  i did a combat tour back in the day and the people i saw losing it were typically the punks doing the wrong thing.

Bill T.
Bill T.

Unverified anecdotal stories are hardly convincing. There are bad eggs everywhere, including the Marines. Casting ALL marines in the same light guarantees that you are at best mistaken, and possibly, at worst, a liar. BTW, can you decode what you mean by "The PTSD is what the marines teach them to do"?

Streets
Streets

Insanity is a tuff cookie to sell..............if he were anyone else........he would be going to the joint for a long-long time...............sorry but your service to your country does not allow for you to commit crimes and get a slap in the hand..............50 years minimum in the joint!

Harry
Harry

You can see what kind of bad habits he picked up *defending* the Afghan or Iraqi people.

Store
Store

This guy is another MONSTER hiding behind a badge, and there are many, the survivor is very very lucky she got away from him while he was distracted by a cell phone call, or he may well have killed her. Police officers should get harsher sentencing when they commit heinous crimes, "because" they are police officers, and because WE the people grant them the power to carry firearms and use them, and also grant them power over us under the "color of authority". LIFE WITHOUT PAROLE IS A MUST IN THIS CASE, ANYTHING LESS WOULD NOT BE JUSTICE FOR THE VICTIM OR THE PEOPLE OF CALIFORNIA. What WE need in California is a state wide review of police hiring policies, making a 4 year college degree mandatory, and no hiring of former military personnel within 5 years of their discharge from the military, the militarization of domestic policing in the USA has run rampant over our freedoms and civil liberties and it needs to be curtailed immediately. WE also need city based Citizens Police Review Boards staffed by local residents, headmasters, doctors, nurses, teachers, firefighters etc, to thoroughly review citizen complaints against the police in their own city, with the legal power to compel the District Attorney to press the charges that the "Citizens Police Review Board" sees fit. The current state of affairs is not good for the public and is not good for the police.

dduck
dduck

All police officers should have their DNA added to data base. I think people would be surprised at the amount of crime that's committed by law enforcement.  But it's like anything, a few bad apples ruin it for the others who are good.

frank_0888
frank_0888

 @dduck Sorry to disappoint you dduck, but it's not a few bad apples.  It's most of them.  Arrogant, egotistic,  violent, and dangerous.

Matthew
Matthew

I will qualify this by saying I am not defending this guy's actions in any manner. I believe he should suffer the consequences for his choices. Even if labeled insane, his punishment should be extensive psychotherapy and confinement for a very long time. I am also of the opinion that there is an aspect to the craziness we are seeing in our country that is far too often laughed away as ridiculous but is very present.  Opposites are a fact of life, a truth of science. For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction, right? So just as there is light/dark, sour/sweet, hot/cold, OCW/OCR ;) there is also good/evil. If you are one who believes there is good in the world, then you cannot deny the existence of evil for there can be no good without it. Not saying we embrace evil in order to further good, just stating a fact.  Our society has allowed the lines of what we know to be inherently good to be blurred to the point of apathy towards what we know to be inherently evil. Even though we may be outraged, incensed, offended or put out, we (as a whole) collectively sit back and do nothing to stop it. Tolerance of evil for the sake of political correctness or fear of what others might think is more dangerous and insidious than perpetrating the crime yourself.  This guy has issues, no doubt. But he is just a symptom in a far deeper societal problem rooted in selfishness and fear. I pray for the future of our Country and for the protection (physically, emotionally and spiritually) of all our service personnel (Military, police, firefighters) and the ones they are supposed to protect.

949girl
949girl

 Thanks.  I'm sure he'll get what he deserves.  It just always struck me as a crazy case.  I don't know if he was "crazy" or not but it makes sense to argue that, a mental hospital is probably safer for an ex-cop than prison is.  So whether he was or wasn't it makes sense for his defense to argue insanity because there wasn't any way he wouldn't be convicted with the witness id and his gun found in her car.

Zak
Zak

Right, that's who he really is, life is the only fair sentence in this case.

Buttercup
Buttercup

What the HELL was he doing even being HIRED as a cop if he was so over medicated that he could claim it was the MEDS that made him kidnap, rape, threaten to kill and basically RUIN a young woman's life?. This guy is SCUM and the alcohol just made the real asshole come out...alcohol is a truth serum and RAPIST is this man's truth. Hang him from his balls.

Shenanigans in OC
Shenanigans in OC

I know you weren't. I was just relaying some info. Have a good night, 949girl.

949girl
949girl

I wasn't trying at all to make excuses for him  and I think he sounds like he deserved to be found guilty.  I never heard about the planning of this, which makes it even worse.  I remember when this case happened and thought these guys sounded evil.  It's just an unusual case to me and I thought maybe he really did go crazy for a short time (which isn't an excuse for the horrible crime). 

Shenanigans in OC
Shenanigans in OC

I've heard there was overwhelming evidence presented during the trial which showed Orban had planned to do something like this. If he "blacked out", it was probably caused by his large consumption of alcohol that day. Our courts have found time & time again that alcohol/drug intoxication is no defense.

Guest
Guest

What is it recently with all the former cops committing sex crimes - and bad ones at that? I thought the Registered Sex Offenders were the horrible people that were so dangerous they have to be kept out of all parks etc. Not sure who to be afraid of any more theses days.

949girl
949girl

I'm not defending this guy whatsoever.  What he did was horrible.  But I do think he kind of lost it momentarily or something took over, PTSD mixed w/ prescription drugs and alcohol, the latter two were by his choice.  If he was apologizing profusely, according to his victim, after the phone call then I think he was mentally off and under the influence and suddenly snapped out of it.   He'll definitely probably spend the bulk of his life, if not all, in prison or a mental hospital.  Like I said, I am not defending him but I just wanted to comment that crazy things can happen and people can snap. When I first heard about this story a couple of years ago I was really horrified by him but I don't think he's all there mentally.  

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