In New York City, Justin Washington was accused of sexually assaulting his teenage relative. Shockingly, he secured an extremely generous plea deal of just thirty days in jail from liberal Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg. One month later, he continued to attack and terrorize five people in the Bronx. NYPD Officers are outraged that the man who should have been facing twenty-five years behind bars was let off the hook after just thirty days. Despite the plea deal backfiring horribly, the DA’s office is still defending its decision, refusing to admit that its soft-on-crime policies aren’t working.
NY POST: Sex fiend gets ‘sweet’ deal from Manhattan DA Bragg on teen rape charge — then attacks 5 others: sources
Larry Celona, Gabrielle Fonrouge; September 22, 2022
A man accused of raping his teenage relative secured a sweetheart plea deal from Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg — and then went on to allegedly sexually terrorize five people in the Bronx just a month later, The Post has learned.
Justin Washington, 25, was promised a plum 30-day jail sentence, along with five years of probation, after he agreed in August to plead down to a charge of coercion in his Manhattan rape case.
But just a week before he was set to be sentenced Wednesday, Washington allegedly went on a sex-crime spree, attacking four women and a man near the homeless shelter where he was living in the Bronx.
After finding out about the Sept. 15 arrest, prosecutors with the Manhattan District Attorney’s Office said they were reconsidering the sentence recommended with the plea deal — which some cops said should never have been offered in the first place.
“How does a man who rapes an innocent teenage girl walk the streets to sexually attack [five] more innocent [people], including a homeless woman?” one Manhattan cop fumed.
Another police source scoffed at the 30-day sentence, pointing out that the original charge of rape Washington faced could have gotten him locked up for up to 25 years, if convicted.
“That is a sweet deal. He went from rape one and facing 25 years in jail, which is hard time, to 30 days,” the officer said.
“What a joke.”
The second-degree coercion charge Washington agreed to plead to also carries a maximum penalty of 16 months to four years behind bars — much more than the 30 days offered by the DA.
“These were very traumatizing crimes and he shouldn’t have been allowed to walk the streets. What about the teenager?” a police source said, adding, “The DA should be coming up with programs for victims, not criminals.”
Emily Tuttle, a spokesperson for Bragg’s office, defended the plea deal originally offered to Washington.
“Our experienced sex crimes prosecutors conducted a thorough investigation and were in regular contact with the survivor’s family throughout this case. Based on the evidence, we determined that this was an appropriate plea to spare the young survivor from having to testify, while holding Washington accountable for his conduct,” Tuttle said in an email.
“As the investigation into this week’s extremely disturbing allegations in the Bronx continues, we will determine whether to ask for a lengthier jail sentence.”
Washington first landed behind bars on February 23, after a teenage relative told police he raped her while the two were watching television together in East Harlem, law enforcement sources said.
He was hit with charges of first-degree rape, first-degree sexual abuse and forcible touching and thrown in jail on a measly $25,000 cash bail or $50,000 bond — despite prosecutors asking a judge to set a $100,000 bail in connection with the case.
About three weeks later, prosecutors reduced Washington’s charges to third-degree rape after they determined they didn’t have enough evidence, and he was sprung from jail when a judge agreed to reduce his bail to $12,000.
Washington, who has no prior arrests, made all of his court appearances, but last Thursday — less than a week before he was set to be sentenced — he allegedly used his last days as a free man to commit a string of attacks, court records say.
The spree started at 8:20 a.m., when he crawled into an 18-year-old man’s window, put his hands in the man’s underwear and demanded money while gripping the victim’s buttocks, prosecutors alleged.
“Can I get a dollar, bro?” Washington allegedly asked the victim, who obliged the request.
The creep refused to take the dollar bill, but then asked for it again before telling the victim, “Never mind, you’re not understanding” and fleeing through the window, prosecutors said.
About 40 minutes later, Washington allegedly crept up the fire escape of a building on Davidson Avenue and began banging on the apartment window of a 26-year-old woman, who was at home with her 9-month-old son at the time, according to prosecutors and sources.
When the woman opened her curtains, she saw Washington masturbating on her fire escape, prosecutors alleged.
Half an hour later, Washington allegedly burst into a 49-year-old woman’s apartment in the same building and attempted to rape her, court records say.
He pushed the woman down on her bed, pulled up her nightgown, climbed on top of her and masturbated as he asked, “Can I get a dollar?,” prosecutors alleged.
As the sicko pushed the woman’s legs apart and smelled them, she bit his hand, scratched him and then whacked him in the head with a hammer, court records say.
Fifteen minutes later, Washington went to an apartment on Aqueduct Avenue, slipped his hand through a woman’s bathroom window, stole her underwear and then began masturbating, prosecutors said.
The disturbing rampage ended about five minutes later when Washington allegedly found his final victim — a homeless woman who was sleeping in the lobby of the Aqueduct Avenue building.
He was caught on surveillance footage molesting the woman, pulling down her pants, touching her buttocks and masturbating, prosecutors said.
The 26-year-old woman who caught Washington allegedly masturbating on her fire escape said Thursday the incident left her “shaken up” but Bragg’s decision to give him a plea deal before it happened is just part Big Apple life these days.
“I’m not surprised that he was out on the streets,” she told The Post.
“Isn’t that what they do?”
The NYPD’s Bronx warrant squad picked Washington up two days later at a homeless shelter on Phelan Place and hit him with a slew of charges, including attempted rape, burglary, forcible touching and sexually motivated felony.
Prosecutors with the Bronx District Attorney’s Office asked the court to remand him into custody — or set a $500,000 cash bail or $1,500,000 bond in the case.
The justice ultimately set a $50,000 cash bail, or $150,000 bond, and sent Washington back to Rikers Island.
The case will be presented to a grand jury this week.
During his hearing in the Manhattan case on Wednesday — where he had been set to get the wrist-slap sentence for the alleged February rape — prosecutors asked Judge Laurie Peterson for an adjournment, citing the string of attacks in the Bronx.
“We believe the defendant has violated the terms of his plea agreement that he made back in August and we’re requesting the defendant be remanded and the case be adjourned for sentencing until further information from the Bronx,” Assistant District Attorney Courtney Groves said during the hearing.
The judge agreed, and adjourned the case until Sept. 28.
Washington also wouldn’t have had to register as a sex offender under the plea agreement, one police officer pointed out — while noting the cushy agreement failed to deter Washington from allegedly committing more crimes.
“I understand they talked to the victim’s family, but what about the rest of the citizens of New York who can become Mr. Washington’s victims in the future, like those innocent five people in the Bronx?,” the cop said.
“If the district attorney didn’t give him this deal, they would not have been sexually assaulted.”
Adam Konta, Washington’s court-appointed attorney in his Manhattan case, said he was waiting to review the evidence on the Bronx attacks, which he later said are “extremely serious” allegations.
“We have a system that works where everyone is innocent until proven guilty,” Konta told The Post by phone, while declining to say if his client has any mental health issues.
“Right now, there’s not enough evidence in the Bronx to know if this was or wasn’t Justin.”
He said the previous plea deal prosecutors offered Washington was appropriate considering his age and the fact he has no prior criminal record.
“Mr. Washington’s earlier plea deal, without context, is convenient fodder to attack Alvin Bragg in the comments section, but to conflate it with the charges the defendant faces now is a mistake,” he said.
“In reality, the sex-crimes unit in the earlier case considered a multitude of mitigating factors – including the fact that Mr. Washington was a 25-year-old with no prior record – and made a just determination.”
Photo: Daniel William McKnight