ELIZABETH, New Jersey — A serial rapist who ambushed couples entering their motel rooms forced them at gunpoint to engage in sex acts before assaulting the women himself, has been sentenced to nearly 150 years in prison.
Rasheed Powell, 42, who has been in and out of jail since he was 14-years-old, was convicted in March of four separate terrifying episodes at northern New Jersey motels in 2012. He was originally charged with two other similar assaults but those cases were thrown out of technicalities.
“Since 14, (Powell) has been literally a never-ending crime spree,” Superior Court Judge Robert Kirsch said, according to NJ.com. “The record of Mr. Powell’s conduct is lifelong and never-ending – until today.”
Calling Powell’s actions “heinous” and “depraved,” the disgusted judge read details from each of the case reports
At a variety of low-cost motels along expressways between Elizabeth and Linden, New Jersey, Powell “preyed” on vulnerable victims as they entered their rooms, the judge said.
Powell would then force his way into the room and, armed with a handgun, force the couples to engage in sex acts with each other. He then would order the men into the bathrooms and then rape the women.
Cops eventually caught Powell in 2012 after tying him to DNA evidence left behind at the crime scenes.
“The terror they lived through in those motel rooms stayed with them for years afterward,” Assistant Union County Prosecutor Caroline Lawlor said. “I can think of no more heinous crime than what was inflicted upon these eight individuals.”
Some of the victims read chilling statements in court, describing how Powell had permanently affected their lives.
“I believe you deserve execution,” one victim said, “the death penalty if it was my choice. I hope you never see daylight again.
“I want to see you cry,” she continued, banging her hand on the table. “You’ve made your bed, now lay in it.”