A registered sex offender pleaded guilty on Monday to raping a female taxi driver in December during a trip that started in Port Jefferson.
The Suffolk County District Attorney’s Office said on Tuesday that 34-year-old Francis Barrios, of Middle Island, pleaded guilty to first-degree rape.
When the incident first occurred, on Dec. 1, authorities said the driver had picked up Barrios at John T. Mather Memorial Hospital that evening. During the trip he beat and strangled her, causing the taxi to crash into a fence on Mount Sinai-Coram Road in Mount Sinai. Barrios, who police said was homeless, then sexually assaulted the victim.
According to the DA’s office, he pulled her into the back seat and raped her.
Officers responded to the crash scene after a passing motorist called 911, police said at the time.
Police did not release the name of the taxi company, to protect the identity of the victim.
The DA’s office said Barrios was previously convicted as a violent offender in Suffolk County for first-degree attempted rape, and violated his parole. He was expected to be sentenced to 24 years in prison and 20 years of post-release supervision on April 20.
On the New York State sex offender registry, Barrios is listed as a Level 3 sexually violent offender who has also gone by the last name Berrios. He was convicted in November 2004 in relation to an incident of sexual contact earlier that year involving a 12-year-old girl, who was described as a “non-stranger” to Barrios. He was sentenced to 42 months in state prison.