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Cyrus R. Vance, Jr.

District Attorney, New York County

For Immediate Release
November 18, 2016

DA VANCE: ELMO RIVADENEIRA SENTENCED TO 25 YEARS IN PRISON FOR 2004 SEX ASSAULTS

Manhattan District Attorney Cyrus R. Vance, Jr., today announced the sentencing of ELMO RIVADENEIRA, 32, to 25 years in state prison for violently sexually assaulting two women in Fall 2004. On November 2, 2016, RIVADENEIRA pleaded guilty in New York State Supreme Court to one count each of Rape in the First Degree and Attempted Rape in the First Degree.

“With this sentencing, Elmo Rivadeneira has been held accountable for brutal attacks which struck fear into the hearts of many New Yorkers,” said District Attorney Vance. “Cold cases are not forgotten cases, as our prosecutors’ dedicated pursuit of this conviction underscores. I hope this sentence will provide some sense of closure to these brave survivors.” 

According to the defendant’s guilty plea and statements made on the record in court, on September 15, 2004, RIVADENEIRA attacked a young woman who was walking to work on West 28th Street and 9th Avenue. The defendant dragged her toward a black car, and tried to force her inside. When the woman fought back, the defendant repeatedly punched her in the face, knocking her unconscious. When she awoke, the defendant and the car were no longer present, but the defendant’s cell phone was left at the scene. She reported the attack to the police, and was treated at a nearby hospital. 

Approximately two weeks later, on October 31, 2004, RIVADENEIRA accosted a young woman leaving a Halloween party near West 28th Street and 10th Avenue. The defendant grabbed her, displayed a knife, and forced her to walk with him to a nearby park. Soon after, RIVADENEIRA forced her into the backseat of a black car parked nearby and drove to an industrial section of Elizabeth, New Jersey. There, RIVADENEIRA raped the woman, stole her possessions, and drove away. The woman, left without any clothing, walked until she found a house where the homeowner called 911. 

After an extensive investigation, including forensic testing of the cell phone left at the scene of the first attack, RIVADENEIRA was indicted for the Manhattan attacks and for a May 2005 rape in Hudson County, New Jersey. Following his conviction and sentencing in New Jersey, RIVADENEIRA was extradited to Manhattan, and arraigned in New York State Supreme Court. 

Assistant District Attorney Robert Ferrari, Chief of Trial Bureau 40, prosecuted the case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Jennifer Gaffney, Deputy Chief of the Sex Crimes Unit, and Martha Bashford, Chief of the Sex Crimes Unit, as well as Executive District Attorney John Irwin, Chief of the Trial Division. 

District Attorney Vance thanked retired NYPD Detective John Savino for his work on the investigation. 

Defendant Information:

ELMO RIVADENEIRA, D.O.B. 4/26/1984

Convicted: 

  • Rape in the First Degree, a class B felony, one count
  • Attempted Rape in the First Degree, a class C felony, one count

Sentenced: 

  • 25 years in prison