Tisbury “peeping Tom” suspect will be deported


Edgartown District Court Associate Justice J. Thomas Kirkland released Reginaldo DeSouza, 26, on personal recognizance at a bail review hearing Friday, following his arrest by Tisbury Police Monday, in connection with a “peeping Tom” incident.

Mr. DeSouza, a native of Brazil, did not go far. He was returned to the Dukes County Jail to await deportation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Federal agents took custody of Mr. DeSouza on Tuesday, according to the sheriff’s department.

Mr. DeSouza was arrested April 5 after a wild chase through the backyards of Tisbury. During the booking procedure at the county jail, law enforcement officials discovered that ICE had issued a detainee order for Mr. DeSouza that allowed him to be held without bail for up to 48 hours while ICE determined what action to take.

Mr. DeSouza was arrested on a charge of disorderly conduct and violation of a Tisbury bylaw (peeping).

He was arraigned in Edgartown District Court Tuesday. The court entered not guilty pleas on his behalf.

District Court clerk-magistrate Liza Williamson set bail at $10,000. She acknowledged that the maximum punishment allowed by state law for the peeping Tom charge is a $300 fine.

“Despite what the legislature has set as a penalty, I find this a very serious crime, one that will not be tolerated in this community,” Ms. Williamson said.

At the bail review hearing Friday, Judge Kirkland noted that neither offense is punishable by jail time. A fine of $150 on the disorderly conduct charge and a fine of $300 on the bylaw violation are the maximum penalties allowed by state law, he said.

Ryan Searle, appointed by the court to represent Mr. DeSouza Friday, said her client has lived with his extended family on Martha’s Vineyard for two years, but has no money.

“Any bail set above a nominal amount is effectively holding him without bail,” Ms. Searle said. “While we appreciate the seriousness of the underlying allegations, we ask that he be released on personal recognizance.”

Cape and Islands assistant district attorney Laura Marshard asked the judge not to reduce bail, based on the seriousness of the incident and his flight from the scene when confronted by neighbors.

Judge Kirkland reduced bail to personal recognizance and ordered Mr. DeSouza to stay away from the Franklin Terrace home where witnesses said they saw him peering into a window, and to check in regularly with a probation officer. At the same time, Judge Kirkland noted that federal immigration authorities intended to take Mr. DeSouza into custody. He is expected to be deported Tuesday, jail officials said.

At the arraignment Tuesday, and the bail hearing Friday, Mr. DeSouza appeared to understand very little English. A Portuguese translator was in court to assist him on Friday.