St. Croix man gets 6 months for writing letters to a woman he is charged with stealing from
Published: September 20, 2013
Font size: [A] [A] [A]
ST. CROIX - While Elias Velasquez Jr. awaits trial on charges in connection with stealing thousands of dollars from a woman's bank account, he will be serving out his sentence in another case related to the first.
Velasquez was convicted Wednesday for writing letters to the woman, violating a court order to have no contact with her.
Velasquez, who currently is in custody at Golden Grove Adult Correctional Facility, appeared before Magistrate Jessica Gallivan on Wednesday - the day after his 46th birthday - for his scheduled bench trial on six counts of contempt of court.
Velasquez opted to avoid the trial and entered into a plea deal, agreeing to plead guilty to a single charge of the crime in exchange for prosecutors dismissing the remaining five counts.
Prosecutors and his attorney agreed to waive the preparation of a pre-sentencing report in the case and proceeded directly to sentencing in the matter.
In April, Velasquez was charged with grand larceny, obtaining money under false pretense and simple possession of a controlled substance after a woman reported that he took her bank card and over a period of several weeks withdrew about $2,500 without her permission.
Prosecutors charge that while jailed, unable to post $35,000 bail, Velasquez wrote six separate letters to the woman he is accused of defrauding. In each letter, Velasquez eloquently expressed how much he cared about the victim and also threatened to do her bodily harm.
Gallivan said the letters Velasquez sent to the woman from prison showed that he had no regard for the law and the conditions set by the court.
She sentenced him to the maximum time on that charge - six months - and gave him credit for the time he had been in jail awaiting disposition on this charge from May 20.
He has pleaded not guilty to the underlying theft charges and is awaiting trial in that case.
- Contact reporter Fiona Stokes at 714-9149 or email email@example.com.