Westfield man indicted on charges of kidnapping, attempted sexual assault, weapons offenses

A Union County grand jury has returned a 15-count indictment against a man accused of holding a woman against her will for hours at an auto shop in Roselle last summer, during which time he allegedly beat, stabbed, and attempted to sexually assault her, acting Union County Prosecutor Grace H. Park announced Friday.

Ricky Suepoi, 52, of Livingston Street in Westfield was indicted Friday on two counts apiece of second-degree attempted aggravated sexual assault and fourth-degree unlawful possession of  a weapon, plus single counts of first-degree kidnapping, second-degree attempted sexual assault, second-degree possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose, third-degree aggravated assault, third-degree making terroristic threats, a third-degree weapons offense, four different third-degree drug offenses, and a fourth-degree drug offense.           

It was shortly before 2:45 a.m. on Wednesday, July 23, 2014 when Roselle Police Department officers rushed to Shelbourne Motorsports on the 100 block of East 1st Avenue in Roselle to encounter sounds of a woman screaming inside the building, according to Union County Assistant Prosecutor David Hummel of the Office’s Special Victims Unit. Moments later, the victim was located while Suepoi was arrested without incident, Hummel said.

An investigation determined that the victim, who was 23 at the time of the alleged attack, had arrived at the auto shop on the evening of Tuesday, July 22, 2014 to inquire about getting a vehicle repaired when she engaged in a conversation with Suepoi, a former acquaintance. Later that night, Suepoi allegedly struck her several times, then brandished what appeared to be a working firearm and ordered her to perform a sexual act on him.

During the next several hours Suepoi allegedly assaulted the victim several additional times and continued to attempt to force her into performing a sexual act on him before the woman managed to contact police from the body shop’s bathroom using her cell phone. The call was interrupted when Suepoi allegedly forced his way into the room and allegedly began stabbing her with a screwdriver. Police arrived moments later, after which the victim was transported to Trinitas Regional Medical Center in Elizabeth for treatment of numerous injuries.

A subsequent search of the auto body shop, performed with assistance from the Union County Sheriff’s Office, revealed an imitation firearm and quantities of the designer drug known as “bath salts” and marijuana. Suepoi was transported to Union County Jail on $500,000 bail.

First-degree crimes typically carry a penalty of 10 to 20 years in state prison, while second-degree crimes typically result in sentences of 5 to 10 years.

These criminal charges are mere accusations. Each defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.