Montgomery County Police have arrested a man after he unsuccessfully attempted to steal a woman’s purse, and then he sexually assaulted her, as she was walking to work through the parking lot of the UpCounty Regional Services Center on Middlebrook Road in Germantown on Friday morning, July 1.
Police arrested Theodros Selam Belay, 24, of Grandview Avenue in Silver Spring and charged him with one count each for robbery, second-degree assault, and fourth-degree sexual assault.
According to Germantown Police Commander David Gillespie, “The suspect approached a lady and tried to grab her purse. A struggle ensued, and he was not able to get her purse. He then grabbed her about her body, but she was able to fight and get away.” Gillespie said that Belay was, at least in part, scared away by other workers who were entering the building at about 8:00 am on Friday morning.
Belay ran across Middlebrook Road and was arrested by police while he was sitting on a bench in front of the Safeway store at 19718 Germantown Road.
This is the fifth time Theodros Belay has been arrested in Montgomery County since 2012, according to Maryland Case Search. He was arrested less than one month ago on, on June 5, 2016, on second-degree assault and disorderly conduct charges. His trial, in that case, is set for Thursday of this week, July 7 in District Court.
In February of 2013, Belay pleaded guilty of robbery and was sentenced to five years in prison by Judge John W. Debelius. However, the judge ordered all but six months of the jail term to be suspended. Belay was also on probation for two years after his six-month incarceration.
Belay was held in the Montgomery County Detention Center after a bond hearing this morning. He was held on $100,000 bond. The suspect is expected in court for a preliminary hearing on this most recent arrest in Montgomery County District Court in Rockville on July 29.
File Photo by Germantown Pulse.