ELIZABETH, NJ-- A series of guilty verdicts has been returned by a Union County jury against a New York man charged with luring a teenager into his car and initiating sexual contact with her a little more than three years ago.
Vincent O’Leary, 48, of Staten Island was convicted on charges of second-degree luring, third-degree endangering the welfare of a child, and two counts of fourth-degree criminal sexual contact following a three-week trial before state Superior Court Judge William Daniel and 25 minutes of jury deliberation.
On October 1, 2014, the 14-year-old victim was walking through a restaurant parking lot on U.S. Routes 1&9 (Spring Street) in Elizabeth when O’Leary approached her and offered her a ride in his car, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutors David Hummel and Michele Buckley, who prosecuted the case.
According to Hummel and Buckley, the victim accepted because she was running late for an after-school program. Once she entered the vehicle, O’Leary began asking her a series of sexually charged questions and requested that she engage in sexual activity with him – and when she refused, he grabbed her arm and forced her to touch him inappropriately they added.
O’Leary then dropped the victim off on Dickinson Street in Elizabeth without further incident. Following a three-week investigation by the Elizabeth Police Department, was identified as a suspect and arrested.
O’Leary was already a registered sex offender in New York following a conviction for a nearly identical crime.
Judge Daniel ordered O’Leary remanded following the jury’s verdict on Thursday. Sentencing has been tentatively scheduled for February 2, 2018.
Convictions on second-degree criminal charges are commonly punishable by 5 to 10 years in state prison.