Taking note of the reluctance of two victims of sexual assault to testify in the case, Associate Justice J. Thomas Kirkland sentenced Irton DeSouza of Brazil on Friday, to six months in jail as part of a plea agreement. Mr. DeSouza has been held since September 9, 2010 in the Dukes County Jail.
Oak Bluffs police arrested Mr. DeSouza, 36, last September, in connection with at least 100 “peeping Tom” incidents over a period of six to eight years, as well as two breaking and entering cases that involved assaults on women last July and August.
Because Mr. DeSouza has already served seven months in jail awaiting disposition of the court case, the court deemed the sentence served. But Mr. DeSouza was not allowed to walk out of Edgartown District Court.
U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has issued a detainee order for Mr. DeSouza. He was returned to jail to await deportation to Brazil.
Federal agents took custody of Mr. DeSouza Tuesday, according to the sheriff’s department.
Mr. DeSouza is not related to Reginaldo DeSouza, 26, who was in court Friday for a bail review hearing in connection with “peeping Tom” incidents, as well as two charges of disorderly conduct, in Tisbury. Reginaldo DeSouza was also jailed awaiting deportation, and also taken into custody by ICE on Tuesday.
Irton DeSouza was arraigned last September in Edgartown District Court on charges of indecent assault and battery, assault and battery, two charges of breaking and entering, larceny, open and gross lewdness, lewd, wanton, and lascivious behavior, intimidation of a witness, and disorderly conduct.
In court Friday, Mr. DeSouza pled guilty to indecent assault and battery, assault and battery, two charges of breaking and entering to commit a felony, and disorderly conduct. A charge of lewd and lascivious conduct was continued without a finding for 30 days.
Judge Kirkland also ordered Mr. DeSouza to register as a sex offender.
Judge Kirkland accepted the plea, but noted circumstances that prompted him to consider a sentence of six months.
“These charges are very serious,” Judge Kirkland said. “Some might look at it and say a very heavy sentence should be opposed.”
The judge said neither of the assault victims in the case was willing to testify in court, and neither was willing to issue a victim-impact statement for him to consider.
At Irton DeSouza’s arraignment last September, Cape and Islands assistant district attorney Genevieve Henrique told Associate Justice Lance Garth that on July 31 a young woman staying at a house in Oak Bluffs “felt someone crawl into bed with her.” When the young woman screamed, her attacker tried to enter another bedroom, then stole a wallet and ran outside.
Ms. Henrique said Mr. DeSouza did not immediately leave the property, but waited outside. “She saw him indecently touching himself,” Ms. Henrique told the court, referring to the resident of the house.
Ms. Henrique also described an August 10 incident, in which Mr. DeSouza entered a home on Bayview Avenue and tapped a young woman on the leg as she lay in bed.
On August 16, Oak Bluffs police released a composite sketch of a man wanted in connection with a series of “peeping Tom” incidents. A break in the case came from an Oak Bluffs homeowner who set up a surveillance system around his home.