First ‘John Doe’ sex assault case ends in conviction

A 28-year-old Manhattan man was sentenced Tuesday, May 6, to a maximum of 18 years in prison for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old Bronx boy in Van Cortlandt Park in 1998.

As the first person to be charged in a “John Doe” case in the Bronx, State Supreme Court Justice John Moore delivered the verdict after Emmanuel Taveras, of 550 West 157th Street, pled guilty in April to one count of sodomy in the first degree.

Taveras admitted to victimizing the boy on April 23, 1998 when he lured the 12-year-old student from a bus stop at 251st Street and Broadway by asking him to help locate a baseball field in the park.

Once hidden by shrubbery, Taveras punched the child in the face and forced him to engage in oral and anal sex.

Though the city recommended the maximum sentence term be set at 12 ½ to 25 years, Taveras received a term of 9-18 years imprisonment.

As the first Bronx County defendant to be charged in a case based solely on a DNA profile, Taveras was first indicted in June of 2005. His only identification came from the 1998 attack rape kit that subsequently led to the compilation of his DNA report.

Later identified through the Combined DNA Index System, a national data bank that links federal, state and local DNA data banks containing forensic biological evidence collected from crime victims, Taveras was arrested in November 2006.

The positive match resulted from a national data base hit on a DNA sample Taveras supplied upon his conviction of a prior drug offense in Bergen County, New Jersey.

John Doe, sex assault, conviction, first, Bronx District Attorney, Robert Johnson, Van Cortlandt Park, Bronx Supreme Court Justice John Moore, Emmanuel Tavares, sodomy

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