Former NYPD officer Franklin Mata was sentenced today to 60 days in jail and three years probation for official misconduct stemming from the rape charges that he and former partner Kenneth Moreno were acquitted of in May. Judge Gregory Carro, who sentenced Moreno to 1 year in jail on Monday after an angry remonstration, told Mata today, "For some reason you continued to carry your partner's bags throughout the trial. Your testimony clearly…it wasn't wholly truthful." The Post reports that Mata gave a "tearful plea" before the sentence: "I never meant for anyone to get hurt that night…I loved my job and worked hard to get where I was, and now it's all gone."
Carro noted that Mata's sentence was less than Moreno's because of several letters written in support of the defendant, but he also seemed to imply that Mata was the patsy of the pair. "Maybe [Moreno's] attorney was referring to you when he said 'simpleton.' Maybe you are the simpleton following the fox…you certainly drew the short straw when you got him as partner," Carro said.
According to the Daily News, the judge also added, "Forever you will be a disgraced police officer, forever you will have that bright shining scarlet letter on your back."
It's unclear whether Moreno, who admitted to "cuddling" with his accuser but not raping her (except on tape to her face), is still in custody after his attorneys filed an appeal on Monday. Inmate lookup indicates that he was released, but other accounts have said he remained in Rikers Monday night after a bureaucratic mix-up. Moreno's attorney tells the Post that his client is "not going anywhere," and so should be granted release pending appeal. The defense is arguing that misdemeanor official misconduct requires that there be a "benefit" for the perpetrator, and in that in this case there was none.
Update (9/9/11): Gothamist has published a long-form feature about the Rape Cop case, written by one of the jurors. It takes you behind the scenes during their deliberations, and explains how they came to their controversial verdict. Buy it today as a PDF or on Kindle.