FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 8, 2012
For Information Contact:
Maryland Man Sentenced to 30 Years in Prison
For Armed Sexual Assaults of Victims He Met Through Craigslist
- Defendant Bound Victims With Cords or Duct Tape -
WASHINGTON - Edgar D. Romero, 26, of Bladensburg, Md., was sentenced today to 30 years in prison on charges stemming from armed attacks on four women whom he met through their Craigslist postings, U.S. Attorney Ronald C. Machen Jr. announced.
Romero pled guilty in September 2010, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia, to two counts of first degree sexual abuse while armed, one count of first degree burglary, and one count of robbery while armed. Each count involves a different female victim. He was sentenced this morning by the Honorable Michael L. Rankin. Romero is required to register as a sex offender for the rest of his life. In addition, upon completion of his prison term, he will be placed on supervised release for the rest of his life.
According to the evidence presented at the plea hearing and two previously held preliminary hearings, Romero contacted numerous women - including the four identified in the plea - during the period of December 12, 2008, through February 20, 2009, through Craigslist advertisements for “erotic services.” He met each victim at a hotel in the District.
At each encounter with a victim, Romero at some point brandished a weapon, either a knife or a firearm, and threatened to kill her if she did not cooperate fully. He, along with accomplices, bound the victims with cords or duct tape. Romero stole numerous items from the victims including money, cell phones, lap tops, identification cards, and credit cards.
He sexually assaulted the two victims identified in the plea and aided and abetted his accomplice’s sexual assault on one of the victims. After he made a final threat to find and harm the victims if they told the police, he and the accomplices left. Romero was arrested on Feb. 27, 2009 and has been in custody ever since.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Machen praised the outstanding law enforcement efforts of a team of members of the Metropolitan Police Department and the FBI’s Washington Field Office who worked on these investigations. He praised the lead detective, Wallace Carmichael, formerly of MPD’s Sexual Assault Unit, as well as the dedicated Special Agents from the FBI’s Washington Field Office. He also noted and thanked the significant effort made by Sexual Assault Unit detective Ingrid Harkins and Second District Detective Keith Tabron.
In addition, U.S. Attorney Machen recognized the assistance of MPD Sergeants Ronald Reid and Julius Hunter; Detectives Kimberly Metivier, Nelson Morais, and Don Juan Monroe; Mobile Crime Lab officers Thomas Coughlin, Kevin Jeter, Ridley Durham, Leother Strong; Crime Scene Officers Tisha Lyons, Mary Wise, and Israel Ruiz, and Fingerprint Examiners Hayward Bennett, Barbara Evans, Murray Jones, and Clinton Hall.
He also commended the cooperation of prosecutors with the Montgomery County State’s Attorney’s Office and members of the Major Crimes Homicide/Sex Section and the Fourth District Investigative Section of the Montgomery County Police Department, who provided assistance during all stages of the investigation. U.S. Attorney Machen praised the work of Victim Witness Unit Advocates Tracey Hawkins and Melissa Milam, Paralegals Joyce Arthur and Tiffany Jones, and Legal Assistant Ashley Patterson, all of the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He also recognized the substantial assistance provided by U.S. Attorney’s Office Criminal Investigator John Marsh and Intelligence Specialist Lawrence Grasso. Finally, he recognized Assistant U.S. Attorney Sharon Marcus-Kurn, who prosecuted the case.