St. Croix man accused of raping teenage girl
Published: September 6, 2013
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ST. CROIX - Police have charged a 44-year-old man in the rape of a 16-year-old girl.
Charlesworth Gonsalves of Estate Grove Place appeared before Magistrate Jessica Gallivan on Thursday morning and was advised of his rights on charges of second-degree aggravated rape, unlawful sexual contact and aggravated child abuse and neglect.
Gallivan advised him that if he is tried and convicted on the charges, he could spend the remainder of his life in prison.
Detective Naomi Joseph said in her police report that a woman reported to Human Services Department counselors on Tuesday that her daughter had been raped by Gonsalves.
According to Joseph, the girl said Gonsalves raped her at his home during the early morning hours of Aug. 30 and she told a friend the same morning and then told her mother, who notified authorities.
Assistant Public Defender Nisha Christian Hendrickson asked the court to set bail at $75,000 and allow Gonsalves released to a third-party custodian who was willing to post his home in Sion Farm, valued at $150,000.
Assistant Attorney General Kippy Robberson objected to the bail amount, saying $75,000 was inadequate because of the nature of the crimes. He asked that bail be set at $100,000 and said he would have no objection to the posting of a 10 percent provision. He requested that in addition to the bail increase, Gonsalves should be placed on house arrest.
"He has a criminal history dating back more than 20 years which includes arrests for rape, firearms possession and fraudulent documents," Gonsalves said. "He continues to be a risk to the community and the victim is a minor and could be subject to manipulation."
According to court documents, Gonsalves' criminal history includes a second-degree rape arrest in 1992, in which he was sentenced to two years probation; a firearm arrest in 1995, in which he was sentenced to six months probation; a 1995 vehicle tampering charge, in which he was placed on one year supervised probation; a 1999 firearm arrest, which was dismissed and a 2004 assault charge, in which he was sentenced to the 18 months he had served in pre-trial detention.
Gallivan listened to the arguments and increased the bail to $150,000, basing her decision on Gonsalves' criminal history and that he could be facing life in prison on the rape charge and another 30 years for the child abuse charge.
Gonsalves will be able to post 10 percent of the bond in cash or post property worth $300,000. He was ordered not to have contact with the girl or anyone in her family and abide by a 24-hour curfew if he is able to post bail.
- Contact reporter Fiona Stokes at 714-9149 or email email@example.com.