Larry Celona and Andy Geller, New York Post, Feb. 2
February 2, 2004 — The man accused of being the vicious East Side rapist has a staggering 27 arrests on his rap sheet — but has never spent more than six months behind bars.
From October 1989 to November 2002, Kevin White, 34, was convicted 25 times for crimes ranging from fare-beating to peddling pot to weapons possession, NYPD records show.
White was also arrested in the alleged rape of a Brooklyn call girl in 1998, but officials yesterday did not know the disposition of that case. Another lesser charge was dismissed, too.
But in the other 25 arrests, White, charged with four sexual attacks and robberies last week, copped a plea and received sentences mostly ranging from conditional discharge to 60 days in the slammer.
His stiffest penalty was six months behind bars for weapons possession. He pleaded guilty to the charge, a Class D felony, after his arrest Sept. 10, 2000.
Weapons possession appears to be the only felony among the 27 arrests. The rest are misdemeanors. Twenty-five of the arrests occurred in Manhattan and two in Brooklyn.
The laissez-faire way the courts dealt with White is not unusual.
A law-enforcement official said it often happens because state law doesn’t allow increasing penalties for criminals who repeatedly commit misdemeanors.
“The law doesn’t permit giving stiffer penalties for repeat misdemeanor offenses. It only permits sentencing offenders to the max, which very often isn’t more than a year,” the official said.
To deal with the problem, the state Office of Court Administration set up the persistent-offenders court about 18 months ago.
“Clearly, this type of scenario presents a problem for the criminal-justice system, which is why we have a persistent-misdemeanor court,” said David Bookstaver, a spokesman for the office.
“It would have raised a red flag on this type of defendant.”
White, who gave his father’s Queens home as his address, was arrested in Union City, N.J., Saturday after one of his victims identified him from a photo array, police said.
Cops then traced him to Union City, where he was staying with a female friend.
The victim, a 23-year-old Upper East Side woman, who was robbed Jan. 24, came forward only after learning of his second attack — the robbery and sexual assault of a 19-year-old woman Tuesday, cops said.
White struck again Thursday, police said, sexually assaulting a 25-year-old man and then forcing him to go to an ATM machine to withdraw money.
A day later, White grabbed a 24-year-old woman’s pocketbook and fondled her, but she hit him over the head with the bag and he fled empty-handed, cops said.
White was also charged with robbing a transvestite of $600 on the Lower East Side on Oct. 16. Sources said he admitted committing the crime.
Additional reporting by Zach Haberman, Jesse Handbury and Lorena Mongelli.
Below is a list of the the East Side rapist’s victims. From rapebusters.org. Click on “Facts and Profile.”
|1||9/18/94||E78 1st-2nd||5:05 a.m.||White female 37|
|2||10/17/94||E65 1st-2nd||4:00 a.m.||Asian female 25|
|3||3/19/95||1st E89-90||5:30 a.m.||White female 29|
|4||8/17/95||W82 Columbus-Amsterdam||3:05 a.m.||White female 25|
|5||9/11/95||E88 3rd-Lexington||2:05 a.m.||2 White females 24|
|6||3/31/96||E78 3rd-Lexington||12:30 a.m.||White female 30|
|7||4/13/96||E76 2nd-3rd||3:35 a.m.||White female 30|
|8||8/10/96||E78 3rd-Lexington||2:30 a.m.||White female 20|
|9||9/28/96||E65 York-1st||4:20 a.m.||White female 25|
|10||11/17/96||E89 1st-2nd||4:30 a.m.||2 White females 24& 28|
|11||1/11/97||E78 York-Cherokee Ave||3:55 a.m.||White female 24|
|12||4/6/97||1st E64-65||4:00 a.m.||White female 25|
|13||8/29/97||E88 2nd-3rd||11:25 p.m.||White female 26|
|14||9/9/97||E81 1st-2nd||12:15 a.m.||White female 28|
|15||3/24/98||E90 1st-2nd||1:00 a.m.||White female 24|
|16||9/13/98||E75 1st-York||3:05 a.m.||White female 28|