Prosecutors have dropped charges against a 20-year-old Dorchester man who was arrested last month for allegedly raping an 18-year-old woman during a ferry trip from Martha’s Vineyard to Woods Hole, according to the authorities and legal filings.
“After consultation with the victim and her family, the Commonwealth filed a Nolle Prosequi,” said Tara L. Miltimore, a spokeswoman for Cape and Islands District Attorney Michael O’Keefe, in a statement Tuesday. Nolle prosequi is the legal term used when the government declines to proceed with a case.
The two rape counts that had been filed against the defendant, Bruno Sanches De Jesus, were dismissed Thursday, according to legal filings in Falmouth District Court, where he had pleaded not guilty. He’d been ordered held on $25,000 cash bail.
In a brief filing Thursday, Assistant District Attorney Jessica M. Croker wrote that prosecutors were dropping the case, citing only the “interest of justice.”
A lawyer for Sanches De Jesus couldn’t immediately be reached for comment, though the attorney had previously told NBC-10 Boston that his client’s cellphone had video that could clear him.
State Police and Falmouth officers responded around 5 p.m. on June 7 to the Steamship Authority for a reported sexual assault. The woman spoke to police at the time, but Sanches De Jesus had left the dock as a passenger in a commercial box truck, according to State Police.
The truck was later stopped on Route 28 north in Falmouth, State Police said last month, and Sanches De Jesus was booked on two counts of rape.
Prosecutors had said in June that Sanches De Jesus had been accused of raping the teen on a delivery truck aboard the vessel.