Cohoes man gets 50 years in prison for assaulting and raping teenage girl

February 08, 2019 12:44 PM

A 39-year old Cohoes man was sentenced to 50 years for rape on Friday.

In Albany County Court, the judge was visibly disgusted as he read the charges and explained the result.

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Derrick Rosa claimed he didn't do it, but police and prosecutors say there was scientific evidence, DNA proof. It is the case of a young girl, they said, repeatedly victimized until she finally spoke up.

Rosa stood before Judge William Carter and claimed that he did not repeatedly sexually assault and rape a teenage girl. He was adamant that testimony against him at trial in January was perjury.

"I'm here right now because I was accused of something that I, in fact, did not commit," he said.

However, on January 11, a jury found him guilty of eight counts, including criminal sexual act and rape.

Prosecutors said it began in October 2014 when the girl was 14 and continued for three years. In court, she confronted Rosa with her victim impact statement. It is NewsChannel 13's policy not to identify victims of sexual assault.

"I will no longer have to look over my shoulder and be afraid of what's going to happen next. What's going to happen is now I have to learn and cope with the trauma and channel my frustration and fear into something better," said the victim.

"What she has been through at the hands of this defendant was beyond anything that I've heard in my 10 years of my career," said Assistant District Attorney Jennifer McCanney.

Rosa's attorney, Michael Feit, is filing an immediate appeal on several grounds that include the use of a highly inflammatory photograph shown at trial. Then, Judge Carter had the last word telling Rosa he should have been a role model, not a rapist.

"Instead of doing that, you decided to rape her in sight of the Christmas tree and for that alone, there is no just sentence for you," said the judge.

Rosa was asked to sign "no contact" orders of protection. He only signed one of them, but the judge said they are all in place.

Feit filed an appeal immediately on the initial indictment and otherwise said this was "a tragic situation."


WNYT Staff

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