RI man held on $25K bail in connection with alleged sexual assault involving Mass. minor

CONCORD, MASS. (WHDH) - A Rhode Island man was ordered held on $25,000 bail Wednesday after officials say he engaged in a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old girl from Massachusetts.

Rocco Pelopida, 41, of East Greenwich, was arraigned on charges of aggravated statutory rape of a child, enticement of a child under the age of 16, paying for sexual conduct with a child under 18, and inducing a child to become a prostitute in connection with allegations that he engaged in a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old female that he met online, according to Middlesex District Attorney Marian Ryan and Concord Chief of Police Joseph F. O’Connor.

Concord officers responding to a report of an older man attempting to leave with a 15-year-old in the area of Saw Mill Road about 3:10 a.m. Wednesday spoke with her parents, who tracked her location and called 911.

Pelopida was reportedly caught in his vehicle with the teen.

A preliminary investigation suggests that the victim and the defendant met online and connected over Snapchat.

Using Snapchat, Pelopida and the victim allegedly arraigned to meet up, and during their meeting, Pelopida allegedly offered the victim money to perform sexual acts and engaged in illegal sexual contact with her.

Pelopida was ordered to stay away from and have no contact with the victim and her family, to have no unsupervised contact with children under 18, and to surrender his passport if he posts bail.

He is due back in court June 17.

(Copyright (c) 2019 Sunbeam Television. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)