Stories posted are written by National news Journalists, not by this blog.
Our Blog Tips

NY- NIAGARA COUNTY: Rape suspect dead at jail

4-20-2009 New York:

A Falls man, charged in what prosecutors called a “heinous” rape and sexual assault, hung himself in Niagara County Jail early Saturday morning.

Deputies said they discovered Vassel Simon, 45, 741 Spruce Ave., hanging inside his housing unit during a routine cell inspection around 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

County corrections officers performed CPR and attempted to resuscitate Simon with the use of an automatic external defibrillator. The inmate was taken to Eastern Niagara Hospital-Lockport were he was pronounced dead a short time later.

The incident was made public in a press release issued by the Sheriff’s Department late Monday morning.

Sheriff James Voutour said late Monday the death will be fully investigated.

“Anytime we have a death in the jail we treat it like an unattended death,” he said. “A criminal investigator is called in. The crime scene unit is called in. We do a complete investigation.”

Voutour said a report by criminal investigators has already been completed and he will review it today.

In addition, Voutour said a report must be made to the state Commission on Corrections, chaired by former Niagara County Sheriff Thomas Beilein. The commission will send its own investigator to the jail for an independent investigation.

Simon was arrested by Falls police on April 13 and charged with first-degree rape, first-degree criminal sex act, third-degree burglary and third-degree menacing.

He was jailed in lieu of bail of $50,000 cash or $100,000 property after prosecutors asked for a high bail “due to the heinous nature of (his) crimes.”

Prosecutors had also expressed a fear that Simon, who they said was not a U.S. citizen, might try to flee the country. At the time of his arrest, he reportedly said to police, “Don’t arrest me, just deport me.”

Investigators charged that Simon climbed through a window of his Spruce Avenue home at 2:30 a.m. and attacked a woman there. He was accused of raping the victim and committing other sex acts.

Simon told arresting officers the sex was consensual, but his victim said he choked her, hit her and threatened to kill her. The woman told police she thought she was going to die during the attack. ..Source.. by Rick Pfeiffer

No comments: