Christopher Welch – Repeat Sex Offender – Library Offender

Cohen rescinded the plea bargain after learning about Welch’s rap sheet, which includes 22 prior convictions for misdemeanors, including forcible touching, sex abuse and seven counts of public lewdness. That kind of criminal record, coupled with a county Probation Department report citing Welch’s anger issues, deserved a prison sentence and not another local jail stint, the judge said.


A Level 3 sex offender was sentenced to 1 1/2 years in state prison today for groping a Mount Vernon Public Library employee last year.

Christopher Welch, a 31-year-old New Rochelle resident, had pleaded guilty in March to persistent sexual abuse, a felony that carries a maximum sentence of four years in prison.

Welch was accused of approaching a 36-year-old woman inside the South Second Avenue library the afternoon of Oct. 16, pressing himself on her and grabbing her breasts.

As the woman tried to compose herself, Welch kept harassing her, and when another woman stepped in to help, he threatened her with a cigarette lighter.

Welch was kicked out and, while outside, approached the library worker, reached around her body and grabbed her buttocks. He fled, but police got a description and arrested him nearby.

Welch entered a guilty plea that pertained only to the second woman. He also was sentenced to three years of post-release supervision after he gets out of prison.

He previously pleaded guilty to accosting both the library employee and the other woman at the library but was allowed to withdraw his guilty pleas when Westchester County Judge Jeffrey A. Cohen broke his agreement to send him to jail for a year on each count.

Cohen rescinded the plea bargain after learning about Welch’s rap sheet, which includes 22 prior convictions for misdemeanors, including forcible touching, sex abuse and seven counts of public lewdness. That kind of criminal record, coupled with a county Probation Department report citing Welch’s anger issues, deserved a prison sentence and not another local jail stint, the judge said.

Welch was designated a Level 3 sex offender – the most serious level, considered the most likely to re-offend – following his June 2007 conviction for forcibly touching a 68-year-old woman in Mount Vernon. He was sentenced to six months in jail.

He also has a March 2006 conviction for first-degree sex abuse involving a woman in Manhattan. The two prior misdemeanor convictions allowed prosecutors to raise the new charges to felonies.

“25% of all sex offenders re-offend within 15 years”
………Sarah Tofte

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