West Hempstead Rape, Kidnapping Suspect Arrested

Levar Burton
Levar Burton

A suspect was arrested Monday for allegedly kidnapping and raping a 21-year-old woman at gunpoint in West Hempstead three months ago, Nassau County police said.

Levar Burton was charged with kidnapping, first-degree rape and sexual abuse. The 24-year-old Amityville man was also charged last week with robbery and sexual abuse stemming from a case in Great Neck earlier this month. And now investigators are asking any other potential victims that might have been targeted by the suspect to come forward.

“This individual is misguided,” Det. Lt. Richard LeBrun, a Nassau police spokesman, told reporters during a news conference Tuesday at police headquarters. “His actions are reprehensible.”

Police alleged that Burton was masked and armed with a handgun when he approached the first victim on Terminal Road, forced her to drive to an unknown location and sexually assaulted her at 4 a.m. on Tuesday, Dec. 27.

The suspect fled the scene on foot in an unknown direction. The victim was taken to a local hospital for treatment.

Then, at 4:15 a.m. Tuesday, March 7, Burton approached a 37-year-old woman from behind while the victim was walking on Middle Neck Road, demanded money from the victim and touched her inappropriately before stealing two phones from her and fleeing the scene, police said.

LeBrun said that Burton threatened both victims and there was evidence that linked the cases, but he could not be more specific. The suspect worked as a newspaper delivery driver for MRG Distribution, but that it was unclear whether Burton was on the clock at the time of the attacks, he added.

He was released last week on $100,000 bail before being arrested Monday for the December incident. Burton will be arraigned Tuesday on the new charges at First District Court in Hempstead.

Special Victims Squad detectives ask anyone with information regarding this suspect to call them at 516-573-4022.  All callers will remain anonymous.