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Richmond Hill rapist gets 17 years for 1997 crimes

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A Richmond Hill man was sentenced to 17 years in prison Friday for two 1997 rapes he was linked to through DNA evidence, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said.

Peter Grebinger, 42, of 85−88 87th St., pleaded guilty to the rapes April 15, Brown said.

The Richmond Hill man admitted he approached the first woman near 87−18 101st Ave. at around 7:30 a.m. Jan. 13, 1997, as she was walking to the subway on her way to work, when he forced her into a building, raped her and demanded money before fleeing, Brown said.

Grebinger also admitted to picking up the second woman, who was flagging a down a dollar cab on her way to work at around 6:20 a.m. Dec. 28, 1997, in his car before raping her and stealing her jewelry, the DA said.

Both women went to borough hospitals, where sexual assault evidence kits were prepared and DNA profiles were gathered, Brown said.

Authorities linked Grebinger to the rapes when he was arrested following an unrelated narcotics investigation in July 2008 in which he was required to submit a DNA sample, the DA said. The sample matched the DNA profiles on file from the two rapes, Brown said.

“Law enforcement has always had the tenacity to go back and attempt to resolve unsolved crimes. With DNA fingerprinting, we now have the technology to effectively do so,” the DA said in a statement. “The defendant is a violent predator and (Friday’s) sentence will protect the law−abiding members of our society from his brutish behavior and, hopefully, provide his victims with a measure of closure after so many years. It will also avoid the necessity of the defendant’s victims having to relive their ordeals on the witness stand.”

Queens Supreme Court Justice James Griffin sentenced Grebinger to 17 years in prison Friday, Brown said.

Reach reporter Howard Koplowitz by e−mail at hkoplowitz@cnglocal.com or by phone at 718−229−0300, Ext. 173.

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