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Hyattsville Man Pleads Guilty to Rape, Sexual Assault

Edwin Rivas, who police said was a suspect in multiple sexual assaults, pleads guilty to charges from incidents in Hyattsville, Mount Rainier.

Edwin Xavier Rivas, the 24-year-old Hyattsville resident charged in two sexual assaults in Hyattsville and Mount Rainier, has pleaded guilty to charges of first-degree rape, a fourth-degree sex offense and second-degree assault in two cases before the Prince George's County Circuit Court.

Rivas' first-degree rape guilty plea stems from a Jan. 28 attack at the 3300 block of Buchannan Street. Mount Rainier Police, who first responded to the report, said the victim was walking through the Queenstown Apartments when she was approached from behind, attacked and forced at knifepoint into nearby bushes where she was then raped.

The case was taken over by the Prince George's County Police Department's Special Crimes detectives. Their investigation resulted in one first-degree rape charge, one second-degree rape charge, three first-degree sex offense charges, three second-degree sex offense charges, two third-degree sex offense charges and one second-degree assault charge filed against Rivas.

Rivas' other guilty pleas, for a fourth-degree sex offense and second-degree assault, stem from a Feb. 23 incident in Hyattsville in which a woman was attacked as she walked home around midnight near Jamestown Road. She was able to get away from her attacker when she shouted out to a passerby.

Those charges were brought by the Hyattsville City Police Department, which arrested Rivas after he was spotted on the street by his victim from the Feb. 23 attack. 

Hyattsville police first began investigating Rivas in early May when an officer on an unrelated call encountered Rivas and thought the 24-year-old bore a resemblance to police sketches depicting one of the suspects in the sexual assaults. 

Rivas was living in the 6100 block of Hamilton Street in Hyattsville when he was arrested in May, but in electronic court documents his address is listed as the 200 block of Audobon Avenue in New York City.

Rivas' arrest came as area police agencies were investigating a series of sexual assaults and rapes in the vicinity of the Northwest Branch Hiker Biker Trail system in the opening months of the year. 

Police initially said that Rivas was considered a suspect in at least four sexual assaults in the Hyattsville, Mount Rainier and Chillum areas, but charges for other crimes have not been filed. 

The public information officer for the Maryland National Capital County Park Police, which is investigating the sexual assaults which took place on trail property, told The Washington Post in May that one victim in their cases has said Rivas is not the man who sexually assaulted her.

Rivas pleaded guilty to the first-degree rape charge on Nov. 2. He had earlier pleaded guilty to the fourth-degree sex offense and second-degree assault on Oct. 26. Rivas' sentencing hearings are scheduled for Nov. 21 at 9:30 a.m. at the Prince George's County Circuit Court in Upper Marlboro.

FRANCINE ABELL (ROCKELLI) November 26, 2012 at 02:44 AM
I bet he didn't come across the border waving a American Flag. Are we lucky or what that he felt he belonged here in our area. Now the taxpayers of the county can feed, clothe, house, and give him all the medical attention he needs. What a God awful price these women have had to pay to make sure he gets care.

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