FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, September 8, 2023
Former Brooklyn Cab Driver Sentenced to 13 Years in Prison for
Violently Assaulting 12-Year-Old Passenger at Gunpoint
Defendant Pleaded Guilty to First-Degree Rape
Brooklyn District Attorney Eric Gonzalez today announced that a former Brooklyn cab driver has been sentenced to 13 years in prison for raping and violently assaulting a 12-year-old girl at gunpoint while driving around with her for more than two hours. The defendant pleaded guilty to first-degree rape in June.
District Attorney Gonzalez said, “With today’s sentence, we are holding this defendant accountable for a brutal and horrific attack against an innocent young girl. I remain committed to keeping our streets safe from violent sexual criminals and to seeking justice for all victims of sexual violence.”
The District Attorney identified the defendant as Rafael Martinez, 35, of East New York, Brooklyn. He was sentenced today by Brooklyn Supreme Court Justice Donald Leo to 13 years in prison and 20 years’ post-release supervision. He must also register as a sex offender upon his release from prison. The defendant pleaded guilty to first-degree rape on June 26, 2023.
The District Attorney said that, according to the evidence, on August 10, 2020, at approximately 5:30 p.m., the defendant picked up a 12-year-old girl from a relative’s home in Fort Greene and was supposed to drive the girl to her home in Bedford-Stuyvesant.
Instead, the defendant stopped the cab on Bergen Street and removed what appeared to be a black firearm from the glove compartment, loaded silver bullets into it and told the victim: “If you say anything, these bullets are for you.”
The defendant then climbed into the backseat, threatened the child with the firearm, and punched her. The defendant then proceeded to rape and sexually assault her, according to the evidence. He then went back into the driver’s seat and drove to a second location, on Herkimer Street, and returned to the backseat, pushed the victim down and raped her again. At approximately 8 p.m., he dropped her home, where she told her mother that she had been raped.
The District Attorney thanked Paralegal Julia Holman, of the District Attorney’s Special Victims Bureau, for her assistance on the case.
The case was prosecuted by Senior Assistant District Attorney Sapna Kishnani, of the District Attorney’s Special Victims Bureau, and Assistant District Attorney Kevin O’Donnell, Deputy Bureau Chief, under the supervision of Assistant District Attorney Miss Gregory, Bureau Chief.