Even as the evening news reports started coming in on June 12 about a police standoff in Beachwood, it was obvious the incident was a notch or two above the usual summer street-crime ugly. Police from all over the city were camped outside Alfredo's International salon on Chagrin Boulevard for 10 hours while an unknown gunman held an unknown number of people hostage. SWAT officers eventually successfully stormed the building; no injuries were initially reported.
But the details that leaked out in the aftermath painted a much grislier picture: Sex offender and all-around psycho David Carrasquillo, 48, was the gunman; reportedly, he stormed the building looking for a woman who had recently changed him with rape. After cleaning out the other employees, he raped the woman twice at gunpoint during the standoff, all the while threatening her life.
Now, to make matters worse, its come out that the whole situation may have not happened had it not been for some sloppy work over at the Cuyahoga County court system.
Today, The Plain Dealer’s Mark Puente has a disturbing play-by-play of Carrasquillo’s recent run-in with the law, including his release on a low bail that allowed him to hunt down his victim and retaliate at the standoff. According to the paper, the South Euclid man was arrested for a June 1 rape; he was accused of sneaking into the Moreland Hills home of an acquaintance and raping her at gunpoint while her husband was asleep in another room.
But as Carrasquillo worked his way through the court system, Court Administrator Greg Popvich tells the PD Bond Commissioner Rober Kozub and his staff failed to note the violent nature of the defendant’s crime or that he has a record of sexual assault. As a result, his bond was set at $25,000.
Popovich said Kozub made a decision with the information he had in the Carrasquillo case. He said that the police synopsis contained in paperwork that came from the prosecutor's office made no mention of a rape allegation. The charges listed were aggravated burglary and kidnapping.
"There was no red flag from the police agency," Popovich said
But prosecutors said the charges of kidnapping, aggravated burglary and rape were listed in the complaint — with each charge indicating that a gun was used. They said that should have spurred the bond investigator to seek more information on the case.
Mason’s office wants to fix the issue, but the courts aren’t buying, with good reason: The firm prosecutors want to hire for the job has been named in the ongoing county-corruption probe.
Usually bureaucratic fingerpointing is just ridiculous sideshow to the greater systemic mess of local government. Unfortunately, this time a woman may have been hurt thanks to the now epic inefficiency of our governing bodies. —Kyle Swenson