DURHAM, NC - On Tuesday, Emerson Ezequile Rivas-Melendez, 23, after pleading guilty to violently assaulting his ex-girlfriend and fleeing North Carolina with their 2-year-old son.
On April 9, 2020, Rivas-Melendez went to the victim’s home and sexually assaulted her. He then cut the woman multiple times and beat her, before taking their child.
The FBI tracked the woman's cellphone, which Rivas-Melendez took when he left, and father and son were found in Prince George County, Maryland, a few hours later, Assistant District Attorney Kendra Montgomery-Blinn said.
The abduction triggered an Amber Alert.
Rivas-Melendez pleaded guilty to second-degree rape, assault with a deadly weapon with intent to kill inflicting serious injury, assault with a deadly weapon inflicting serious injury, robbery with a dangerous weapon and child abuse inflicting serious injury.
He was sentenced to eight to 12 years, and will be placed on North Carolina’s state sex offender registry for 30 years.
*In 2003, the Durham city council enacted Resolution 9046, which forbids police officers from inquiring into a suspect’s immigration status, unless they are believed to have committed a “serious crime,” such as rape, murder, etc. The policy had the full support of not only then-Mayor Bill Bell, but of former Durham Police Chief Jose Lopez as well.
In September 2007, during a city council meeting, Chief Lopez, assured citizens that the policy would eventually result in the reduction of crime, as neither victims nor witnesses would have to worry about inquiries into their legal status in the country. Of course, enacting the new ‘sanctuary’ policy for illegal aliens, had the exact opposite result on the city.
By 2019, the crime rate in Durham was higher than was in 91.7 percent of other U.S. cities.