Reginald Bellot: Paroled Crips gangster raped woman, 70, at gunpoint in her stairwell
A Crips gang member and parolee was arrested for raping and assaulting a 70-year-old woman in the stairwell of her Bronx apartment this summer.
The New York Police Department revealed how 28-year-old Reginald Bellot forced the victim into the stairwell and sexually assaulted her at gunpoint. Authorities used surveillance camera footage to track and identify the suspect, who was reportedly on parole for a robbery charge at the time of the attack.
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Bellot, a known Crips gang member, was granted parole on February 25 this year after he became eligible earlier that month. While it is unclear why he was released from custody, Bellot had reportedly been serving time for a 2018 conviction on attempted robbery and prison contraband charges. According to Department of Corrections and Community Supervision records, he was originally due for release in February 2023.
Police records revealed Bellot was also sentenced to two years in prison for attempted burglary in 2015. On Tuesday, September 8, the suspect was arrested and charged with rape, strangulation, predatory sexual assault, criminal sex act, menacing and unlawful imprisonment. He is currently being held without bail in Westchester County Jail, the New York Daily News reported.
The sexual assault reportedly occurred at around 2 am on July 27 in the Belmont neighborhood of the Bronx, the NYPD said. The victim was entering her apartment building when she was accosted by Bellot, who was wearing two plastic masks on his face. He subsequently pulled out a handgun, forced the elderly woman into a stairwell, and proceeded to rape her. The victim sustained injuries throughout her body but did not alert the authorities at the time, but the rape came to light about a week later when she went to an area hospital for a check-up.
NYPD released surveillance footage of the attack on August 3. Bellot was jailed the same day on burglary and weapon possession charges. Investigators used the footage to track the suspect's movement and identify him.
Crime rates continue to rise in New York City. As of September 5, rapes are up by 4.5 percent are other sex crimes by 26.2 percent as compared to the same period last year. Meanwhile, murders and robberies are down by 2.2 and 1.9 percent respectively since last year. On the other hand, shootings are up 3.8 percent and felony assaults by 5.5 percent, the Daily Mail reported.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio blamed the state's criminal justice system for the soaring crime rates in the Big Apple. During his daily remote press conference on Monday, September 6, de Blasio said there were only 18 trial verdicts across the five boroughs in the first half of 2021, compared to 405 during the same period in 2019. "That isn't good enough," the mayor commented, after lauding the NYPD's efforts in making a record number of gun-related arrests and highlighting the work of community activists.
In response, Lucian Chaifen, director of communications with the Office of Court Administration, accused the mayor of trying to shift the blame on others. "Yet again, the mayor demonstrates his glaring lack of understanding of the criminal justice process in this state," Chaifen said in a statement. "His gaslighting rhetoric regarding court operations is an attempt to shift the public safety discussion continues."