GOSHEN - A New Windsor man pleaded guilty on Monday to raping two young women he picked up as fares while driving a taxi near the City of Newburgh’s waterfront bars and clubs.
Javier Vilchez-Salazar, 34, pleaded guilty in Orange County Court to two counts of first-degree rape, a felony.
Vilchez-Salazar committed the rapes on Sept. 3 and Nov. 12, 2017, according to the Orange County District Attorney’s Office. In each case, he picked up a young woman who was looking for a cab to take her home. In each case, prosecutors said, Vilchez-Salazar drove the woman to the Lake Street area in New Windsor and sexually assaulted her, then left her on the roadside. He left one victim, a 19-year-old, naked and barefoot.
“Both victims believed they were getting a safe ride home,” Assistant District Attorney Kerry Kolek told Judge Craig Brown when Vilchez-Salazar was arraigned on the indictment in December.
City of Newburgh police charged Vilchez-Salazar with rape on Nov. 25, following an investigation by their agency, New Windsor police, state police and the district attorney’s office.
In exchange for the guilty plea, prosecutors will recommend a prison term of 21 years, plus 10 years of post-release supervision. Vilchez-Salazar will remain in Orange County Jail until his sentencing on May 3.
“I commend the police officers whose investigation stopped this defendant from continuing these heinous predatory attacks on unsuspecting women who were merely trying to get home safely,” said District Attorney David Hoovler in a prepared statement. “The bravery and tenacity of the survivors of these attacks in coming forward and cooperating with law enforcement is to be admired, and was indispensable to the successful prosecution of this case.”