‘No question’ man accused of raping kids should stay locked up, judge says
WANTAGE — A Sussex County Superior Court Judge has decided that the man charged with raping two children in their bedroom after breaking into their home will not be freed before his trial.
According to the New Jersey Herald, Judge N. Peter Conforti ruled on Tuesday that there was "no question" 33-year-old Craig Lassiter should be detained.
Lassiter is facing 20 charges from the incident last month. Among the more serious charges are two counts of first-degree aggravated sexual assault on a minor less than 13-years-old, and two counts of first-degree sexual assault during the commission of a robbery or burglary.
State Police said when they were called to the home early on the morning of Sept. 18, they encountered a Chevrolet Silverado truck with New York plates. The driver, later identified as Lassiter, was able to evade an attempted stop by police by driving around a patrol car and over a mailbox State Police said. The truck, which police say was stolen, was found abandoned in a field.
Lassiter was arrested after a joint investigation by several law enforcement entities
"There is strong evidence that the state possesses in terms of the charges filed against Mr. Lassiter, I am mindful of that," Conforti was quoted in the Herald saying. "I am clearly convinced that this defendant presents a danger to others as well as presents a risk in terms of appearing in court.
According to the Herald, Conforti said Lassiter could face up to life in prison if he is convicted on the charges. The Herald reported a public defender assigned to Lassiter had asked that he be placed on an electronic monitoring system as he is the provider for his wife and three children.
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Contact reporter Adam Hochron at 609-359-5326 or Adam.Hochron@townsquaremedia.com