Rhode Island man sentenced to life in prison for kidnapping, sexually assaulting, child, woman



Attorney General Peter Neronha announced that a Cranston man has been sentenced in Providence County Superior Court to serve life in prison at the Adult Correctional Institutions for kidnapping and sexually assaulting two female victims in 2020.

On April 18, 2024, at a hearing before Superior Court Justice Linda Rekas Sloan, 38-year-old Luis Martinez-Romero pleaded nolo contendere to one count of kidnapping of a minor, one count of first-degree child molestation, and one count of first-degree sexual assault. Judge Sloan sentenced the defendant to life in prison at the ACI, and ordered sex offender registration and counseling, as well as No Contact Orders between the defendant and the victims. 

“I won’t be wasting my words on this defendant, other than to say he got exactly what he deserved,” said Attorney General Neronha. “I’m incredibly grateful to the victims in these cases. Their extraordinary courage in reporting their assaults has saved other women and children from experiencing similar crimes at the hands of this defendant. I also want to thank the Providence Police Department for their outstanding work in these cases and countless others.”

Had the cases proceeded to trial, the State was prepared to prove that on two separate occasions, Martinez-Romero kidnapped and sexually assaulted two female victims, one of whom was under the age of 14.

On October 5, 2020, Martinez-Romero kidnapped a female child at her bus stop and sexually assaulted her in his gray Nissan SUV before returning her to the bus stop. The victim reported the incident to her parents and emergency rescue personnel transported her to Hasbro Children’s Hospital.

The Department of Health obtained DNA evidence from the child’s sexual assault examination that matched Martinez-Romero. When investigators ran the DNA evidence through the FBI’s Combined DNA Index System, Martinez-Romero’s DNA also matched DNA collected from an unsolved sexual assault that occurred eight months earlier. 

During that incident, on February 2, 2020, Martinez-Romero approached two women at Rhode Island Hospital and identified himself as their ride-share driver. Martinez-Romero dropped one woman at her boyfriend’s home and sexually assaulted the other woman in his vehicle before also dropping her off at her home.

“Because of the victims’ bravery in these cases, this defendant will be held accountable for his terrible crimes,” said Providence Police Colonel Oscar L. Perez. “As always, I am grateful for the men and women of the Providence Police Department, who work tirelessly to ensure our community is safe from criminals like this defendant.”

Assistant Attorney General Shannon Signore and Special Assistant Attorney General Ariel Pittner of the Office of the Attorney General and Detectives Koren Garcia and Jeff Richards of the Providence Police Department led the investigation and prosecution of these cases.

1 Comment

  1. Fed Up

    April 19, 2024 at 1:23 pm

    This is how you do it. Keep these dangerous lunatics locked up for good.

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