2012-02-23 / Front Page

Convicted Sex Offender Arrested Again

By ERIC GROSS

 

The Putnam County Sheriff’s Department has asked the public for its help in locating potential crime victims associated with a convicted sex offender, Jonathan DeLaura, 37, of Jefferson Valley. Meanwhile, DeLaura, who was arrested last month following an incident in Putnam Valley, was charged again Tuesday with a felony sex offense.

Yorktown Police apprehended DeLaura in Mahopac after detectives from both the Sheriff’s Department and Yorktown PD executed a search warrant at the suspect’s home on East Main Street in Jefferson Valley and seized an electronic device containing what Lt. Richard Malan described as “child pornographic material.”

DeLaura was charged with possessing a Sexual Performance by a Child after his vehicle was stopped on Croton Falls Road in Mahopac and following arraignment was remanded to the Westchester County Jail without bail.

District Attorney Adam Levy said the new charge was a Class E felony carrying a maximum four-year state prison term if found guilty.

In the Putnam investigation, Chief Sheriff’s Investigator Gerald Schramek charged that DeLaura allegedly used the Internet to meet underage children through social networking chat rooms: “The suspect, who used screen names “Silly Rabbit,” “Riddler Boy” and “Damastrynd,” would pose as a 17-year-old girl in order to meet young boys. After engaging in sexual explicit conversations with the teens, he requested that they send him sexually oriented photographs. When they did he would reveal that he was a man. Demanding a meeting to engage in sexual acts, DeLaura would use the conversations and photos to extort his victims warning that he would go to police or the youth’s family.”

Schramek said after arranging to meet a minor for sexual gratification the parolee was arrested by investigators after the suspect believed he was going to meet his next victim.

DeLaura was charged with Criminal Sexual Act and endangering the welfare of a child. He was arraigned by Putnam Valley Justice Gina Capone and was remanded to the Putnam Correctional Facility in lieu of $150,000 bail. A spokesman at the county jail said DeLaura posted the necessary bond last Friday and was released.

The New York State Sex Offender Registry indicated that DeLaura was convicted in October, 2009 in the Bronx for sexual misconduct. In that case he reportedly engaged in sexual contact with a 12-year old boy.

Sheriff Don Smith said investigators theorize that “others may have been victimized by Mr. DeLaura. Anyone having contact with him or his alias Jon Dulak or any of his internet screen names in a social networking chat site is asked to call the Sheriff’s Office at 225-8060. All queries will be kept strictly confidential.”

Levy said DeLaura also faces a maximum four-year state prison term if found guilty of the charges lodged in Putnam Valley.

 
 

 

Return to top

Click here for digital edition
2012-02-23 digital edition

Weekly Quotation

“Opinion has caused more trouble on this little earth than plagues or earthquakes.” ~Voltaire