Stow man given jail time for incidents involving disabled women in 2013

By Jeff Saunders | Stow Sentry Published:

A Fishcreek Road man recently pleaded guilty to two counts of misdemeanor unlawful restraint for incidents involving two developmentally disabled women he was transporting by bus last year.

Summit County Common Pleas Judge Tammy O'Brien sentenced Reinaldo L. Velazquez-Ortiz, 48, to 22 days in the Summit County jail. He was classified a Tier I sex offender, which requires him to register his adress with his local sheriff for 15 years.

According to the Summit County Sheriff's Office, a 23-year-old developmentally disabled woman told a sheriff's detective on Oct. 10, 2013, that while Velazquez-Ortiz was transporting her by bus to an unspecified location on June 4, 2013, he stopped the vehicle and offered her money "for a sexual act." The woman stated she feared for her safety and she did not perform the sexual act "but was told to keep the money and not tell anyone."

According to a sheriff's office press release, the amount was $12 and the location was a "secluded area," which Summit County sheriff's Inspector Bill Holland said is in Akron. Velazquez-Ortiz was arrested Oct. 30.

The sheriff's office said the investigation began when the mother of a 22-year-old developmentally disabled woman reported her daughter told her about an incident involving Velazquez-Ortiz in Peninsula while he was transporting her by bus to an unidentified day program in Twinsburg on Sept. 27.

At the request of the Summit County Prosecutor's Office, the two charges were reduced from two third-degree felony abduction charges with sexual motivation specifications. In addition, also at the request of the prosecutor's office, one count each of third-degree felony compelling prostitution, fifth-degree felony attempted gross sexual imposition and misdemeanor charges of solicitation and voyeurism were dismissed.

"Reinaldo Velazquez-Ortiz took advantage of women who are particularly vulnerable," Summit County Prosecutor Sherri Bevan Walsh said. "My office, as well as the victims and their caregivers, felt that it was important that the resolution of this case result in Mr. Velazquez-Ortiz being labeled a sex offender. This plea agreement, which resulted in a criminal conviction, not only accomplished that goal, but it also ensures he can never work with people with special needs again and spared the victims from having to testify."

Email: jsaunders@recordpub.com

Phone: 330-541-9431

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