Michael Pena, NYPD Officer Accused of Rape, Says He's Being Targeted by the DA
Michael Pena, the off-duty NYPD officer arrested on Friday for raping a 25-year-old school teacher at gunpoint in Inwood, says that he's afraid he'll be made "an example out of" after his fellow NYPD cops Franklin Mata and Kenneth Moreno were acquitted by a jury of the rape of an East Village woman earlier this year. From Riker's, he told the Daily News, "The DA is arresting cops, indicting cops."
Pena, who was arrested after witnesses saw him having sex with the woman in the back courtyard of an apartment building, holding her at gunpoint with his 9-mm. police-issued pistol -- he was reportedly drunk at the time -- said, "Eventually, the truth will come out," but that his lawyer told him not to comment on specifics of the case at this time.
He added, "Everything's not black and white. There are shades of gray."
Pena is being held on a $1 million bond and was arraigned on Saturday on charges of first-degree rape, forcible rape, and predatory sexual assault. He claims that everything was "perfect" before Friday in both his professional and personal life (he was engaged several months ago). His father says that his son has been framed, and his aunt says, "He's a gorgeous person. He's a person with a lot of moral values, a family."
He has been suspended from the force.
Meanwhile, it seems more and more likely that the charges in the sexual assault case against Dominique Strauss Kahn will be dropped, with the Manhattan DA's office "preparing to tell the court they cannot move forward with the prosecution."
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