1999-07-10 / Front Page

Rape Turns To Chase; Mob Clobbers Perp

by Joan Ward George


After allegedly raping a Far Rockaway woman early Wednesday morning, Michael Gilliard, 38, of 1476 Beach Channel drive, was chased down by a group of angry young men who were told by the alleged victim that Gilliard had raped her. Vigilantism in its purest form followed as the mob reportedly ran Gilliard down and repeatedly punched and kicked him. According to police, Gilliard also sustained several stab wounds from a knife.

Raped and threatened with death, a 27 year old Far Rockaway woman summoned up enough courage and stamina to follow her alleged assailant to the entrance of the Redfern Houses and alert a group of nearby young men that she had just been attacked.

The victim told police that she was walking home just before 4 a.m. when Gilliard grabbed her and took her to a loading dock behind 14-14 Brunswick avenue. She told police that Gilliard threatened her life then raped her. She then followed Gilliard to the nearby Redfern houses where Gilliard became the victim of a vigilante attack. He was able to escape his assailants and fled to a subway, but was quickly apprehended by police who were notified by the alleged rape victim. Gilliard was transported to Jamaica Hospital Center where he remains in stable condition. He has been charged with felony rape and assault.

Gilliard told police that he would not be able to identify the group of men who assaulted and stabbed him.

The young rape victim was transported to St. John’s Hospital where she was treated and released.

As The Wave went to press Thursday police were still unaware of who the vigilantes were who came to the young woman’s rescue

According to authorities, Gillard is a parolee with a history of sexual attacks. When he was charged and arrested this week he was still on parole for a 1989 sexual attack. At the time of the 1989 attack, he was on parole for a 1984 rape of a 13 year old Rockaway girl.

According to police, Gilliard was convicted of the 1984 rape and was sentenced to 2 ½ to 7 years in prison. While on parole for that rape, Gillard, in April 1989, was charged with choking, beating, attempted rape and sodomizing a Far Rockaway woman. He was convicted in 1990 of these charges and sentenced to 4 to 8 years. Gilliard attempted to obtain early parole in 1995 but was flatly turned down because he had stopped attending sex-offender counseling and because the parole board believed him to be a continued threat to the community. However, under the law, the parole board was no longer able to legally hold him and had to grant Gilliard his conditional release in April 1996. He was placed on parole one more time, which was due to be over sometime this year.

According to a spokesperson at the Queens District Attorney’s office, the tables could quite possibly turn for Gilliard this go ‘round if he is convicted of the Wednesday night rape of a Far Rockaway woman. Although it is completely within the purview of the court, persistent repeat felons such as Gilliard if convicted again, can be sentenced to life in prison, without parole.

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