DA declines to prosecute alleged rape aboard ferry

Cape and Islands District Attorney says an alleged rape onboard a Steamship Authority ferry won't be prosecuted after consultation with the woman and her family. -Rich Saltzberg

Updated June 30

The Cape and Islands District Attorney’s Office has declined to prosecute a Dorchester man on two rape charges stemming from an incident alleged to have occured aboard a Steamship Authority ferry June 7

Cape and Islands Assistant District Attorney Jessica Croker filed a motion of nolle prosequi for the charges against Bruno Sanches De Jesus, 20. The motion is dated June 24. Nolle prosequi is Latin, and is defined as the “formal notice of abandonment by a plaintiff or prosecutor of all or part of a suit or action.”

Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe told The Times the decision came “after a consultation with the victim and her family.”

Based on court records, De Jesus doesn’t have an attorney of record, according to an official from Falmouth District Court. 

De Jesus pleaded not guilty to the charges on June 8. DeJesus was stopped by State Police after exiting the ferry. Edgartown Police Lt. Chris Dolby, who was on the ferry at the time, was approached by someone about the alleged incident, and snapped a photo of the vehicle, which assisted police with finding it.

De Jesus had been held on $25,000 cash bail, and a probable cause hearing had been scheduled for June 29. De Jesus was released, according to a Barnstable County Sheriff’s Office official. 

De Jesus could not be immediately reached for comment. 

Updated with the release status of De Jesus.


  1. His in jail being missed treated with out all the people that cares for him, everyone worried not able to do anything for this guy, an illegal immigrant that has no one to turn to Because someone careless

  2. And also the prison allways kept information from the family 20 years old Is the kid that y’all just ruined his life he could of been my little brother or this father or mother that’s is going thru all of this

    • He received the same due process as anyone else would in the same position. If he was illegally present he should have been turned over to ICE, not released but apparently he got off easy twice. Literally anybody could have been accused of the same crime and the abandonment of charges doesn’t prove his innocence just enough doubt that the DA is dropping the charges. Should there be special rules for people who “could be your brother now”?

  3. A rape by a possible illegal immigrant, without a lawyer, beats our own District Attorney?

    • Mike– An “alleged” rape by someone with a Hispanic name..
      I think you might be showing a little too much with that comment there. Comments like that might lead some “liberals” to think you may have some “implicit bias”.
      Can you possibly imagine that the alleged victim may have made this up, or exaggerated it ?
      Do you know there are currently 26 women who allege that our former president –#45–had some kind of inappropriate sexual misconduct with them ? The allegations ranging from inappropriate touching , consensual sex ( adultery) and outright rape.
      I have heard from many of trumps supporters that EVERY ONE of those women are liars.
      It happens sometimes,,,
      And who are you gonna believe anyway ? An unidentified woman ( I’M ok with her being unidentified unless they charge her for a false statement ) who apparently recanted her story under questioning, or a guy named Jesus ?

    • God forbid our absentee District Attorney set foot on Martha’s Vineyard.

      Perhaps he wishes to distance himself from the ridiculous dead-letter-office ‘cases’ his underlings whip at the Edgartown courthouse, long past their sell-by date.

      As long as Liza Williamson keeps rubber-stamping any nonsense any local cop pushes under her nose, and local serfs continue to plead out & pay up, why mess with a successful profit scheme? Not a bad gig for 95% of a judge’s salary, eh, Liza?

      Catching REAL criminals is difficult & dangerous; Far easier & more profitable to convert citizens INTO criminals.

      Right, Mr. O’Keefe?

      The DA’s office, The District Court, and the island’s bloated number of ‘law-enforcement agencies’ are overdue for some significant ATTRITION.

      If not NOW, WHEN?!

      • Brian — you have quite a few wide ranging general allegations about something.. You seem to be long on accusations and name dropping, but your “allegations” are pretty short on specifics.
        Like converting citizens into criminals.. What are you trying to say there ?

        The story says that the police caught this guy and arrested him. At the time he was alleged to be a rapist.. Do you not consider a rapist a “real” criminal ? The police did their job. They caught a person accused of rape… It seems the DA also did his job and questioned the alleged victim. He then decided for reasons we do not know, not to prosecute. It could very well be that Mr De Jesus is just an innocent civilian and the D.A. decided to NOT make a criminal out of him.

  4. They just released him after consulting with the victim ?
    Was this a “Karen” incident ?

  5. Meanwhile Cosby was seen driving home from prison in a white Ford Bronco and the CDC just issued a suggestion that people wear seat belts even if outside a car.

  6. Andrew– how do we know if you are joking about this ?
    You believe Biden proposed rationing meat to Americans at 1 hamburger a month.
    You believe trump won the election
    You believe climate change is a hoax
    Ditto covid
    Obama was born in Kenya.

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