A 17-year veteran cop was arrested and charged Friday in a number of rapes that he helped investigate as the sergeant in charge.
Sergeant Jeffery Pelo, 41, of the Bloomington, IL Police Department was charged as a serial rapist with four rapes dating back to 2002. In addition, He was charged with two counts of home invasion as well as burglary charges.
The prosecutor’s office characterized Sergent Pelo as a one-man crime spree. Pelo’s capture came two days after he was charged with stalking a local woman and Associate Judge Rebecca Foley ordered him remanded on $2 million bail.
In all of the rape incidents, the victim awoke to a strange man in their home. Two rape victims positively identified Pelo out of a photo line-up. Pelo headed the investigative team which arrived at the conclusion that all four cases were very similar and that one man was probably responsible for all of them.
Investigators found a mask, a pry bar and other items that they believe were used in at least one case, but other rape victims described their attacker as wielding a gun or a knife
Pelo’s attorney Steve Skelton said at a press conference, “I don’t think there’s any believable reason he could be charged. But I don’t think under the circumstances that there’s any likelihood of a conviction in this case because I’m firmly convinced today, as I was several weeks ago, of the innocence of my client.”
Co-workers, friends and neighbors characterized Pelo as a decorated officer, a good friend and a considerate neighbor. His community was shocked over the revelation that a top cop turned out to be the serial rapist they feared.
One officer, who requested anonymity, said that Pelo’s fellow officers and commanders were shocked as the evidence mounted that he was their suspect.
“We followed the evidence to [whomever] it led us,” he said.
”’Jim Kouri, CPP, is currently fifth vice-president of the National Association of Chiefs of Police and he’s a staff writer for the New Media Alliance (thenma.org). He’s former chief at a New York City housing project in Washington Heights nicknamed “Crack City” by reporters covering the drug war in the 1980s. In addition, he served as director of public safety at a New Jersey university and director of security for several major organizations. He’s also served on the National Drug Task Force and trained police and security officers throughout the country. Kouri writes for many police and security magazines including Chief of Police, Police Times, The Narc Officer and others. He’s a news writer for TheConservativeVoice.Com. He’s also a columnist for AmericanDaily.Com, MensNewsDaily.Com, MichNews.Com, and he’s syndicated by AXcessNews.Com. He’s appeared as on-air commentator for over 100 TV and radio news and talk shows including Oprah, McLaughlin Report, CNN Headline News, MTV, Fox News, etc. His book Assume The Position is available at Amazon.Com. Kouri’s own Web site is located at”’ http://jimkouri.us
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