Rot, You Animals
Eric Lenkowitz, New York Post, Jan. 23
The boyfriend of a Queens mom savagely beaten and sexually tortured by five homeless immigrants in Flushing Meadow Park said he is tormented by his inability to stop the attack and wishes the gang of rapists would “rot in jail.”
“My life is no longer my own. I feel hate because in that moment I felt powerless,” the man wrote in a letter read yesterday by prosecutor Kenneth Applebaum as three of the five attackers were sentenced for the Dec. 19, 2002 horror.
“I couldn’t do anything, surrounded by a group of wild animals. I hope that they rot in jail.
“I do not forgive them for what they have done to me, and in particular to my companion. We are changed forever.”
Armando Juvenal and Luis Carmona were each sentenced to 22 years in prison for rape, kidnapping and robbery.
A probation report showed Carmona has a venereal disease, though his lawyer Michael Hartofilis claimed he was diagnosed after his arrest.
Supreme Court Justice Randall Eng said the VD “makes this all the more horrific and horrendous.”
Carlos Rodriguez, who was also charged with sodomy, got the stiffest sentence of 23 years.
“Yours was the disposition I was most reluctant to take because of your role in this,” Eng told Rodriguez. “You certainly were involved in the most extreme acts in the victimization of the defendant.”
The victim’s boyfriend said no sentence is long enough to make up for the attack, which has permanently scarred his family.
“There are days when I am afraid of seeing three or four men walking,” he said. “I become afraid that they will assault me.
“I do not understand how those people, if in reality you can call them that, could do such a thing. They have a mother, a sister, and aunt.
“How could they do such a thing to a woman?”
Applebaum said he agreed to accept pleas from all five men in December, strictly “to spare the complainant the horror of having to testify at five separate trials.”
He asked that Rodriguez get the maximum allowed under the deal, 23 years, because “he was driving the bus in this case.”
Applebaum pointed out that it was Rodriguez’s shantytown hut by the Long Island Rail Road tracks where the victim was dragged and then repeatedly raped.
Rodriguez’s lawyer, Garnett Sullivan, disputed Appelbaum’s claim, saying, “There is nothing in the allocutions or the evidence that shows he was the ringleader.”
The trio were sentenced a week after Victor Cruz was given a 21-year prison term. The fifth attacker, Jose Hernandez, is to be sentenced Feb. 24 after he undergoes psychiatric evaluation.
Carmona and Rodriguez both made statements of sorrow to the court before they were sentenced yesterday.
“I have a family and I wouldn’t want something like this to happen to anyone in my family,” said Carmona, the only member of the group who is legally in the country. “I leave it up to God to help me and guide me.”
Rodriguez said the attack was, “a big mistake on my part.
“If I were to be born again I would never do this.”