Lockport Union-Sun & Journal Online

Courts

October 5, 2013

City man denies rape charge

Lockport Union-Sun & Journal — A relatively new city resident is facing multiple sex charges, which he pleaded not guilty to Friday in Niagara County Court.

Jose Rosario, 33, 152 Cottage St., has been charged with first-degree rape, first-degree criminal sexual act and two counts of first-degree sexual abuse. He was arraigned Friday afternoon before Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III.

Assistant District Attorney Elizabeth R. Donatello said Rosario had only lived in Niagara County for a short time and has contacts in New Jersey. Rosario said in court he had moved to the area about 10 months ago.

Rosario was arrested in August and is currently being held in Niagara County Jail. Murphy hiked the bail to $10,000, up from the original amount of $5,000 set by Lockport City Court.

Donatello had asked for a higher bail, citing the indictment and the fact he had acquaintances in New Jersey as reasons for the increase. There was an alleged admission by Rosario that the victim had tried to push him away during the incident, Donatello said. 

While the victim was unconscious, Rosario reportedly performed various sex acts, Donatello said in court.

Public Defender Michele G. Bergevin said Rosario was working prior to his arrest and would still have that job available when released. Even so, Rosario would be unable to pay bail, Bergevin told Murphy.

Rosario will return to court on Dec. 6 and a tentative trial date has been set for Feb. 24. An order of protection was granted by city court for the victim and transferred to county court.

Contact reporter Joe Olenick at 439-9222, ext. 6241 or follow him on Twitter @joeolenick.

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