An East Orange man accused of raping a Morristown woman in her apartment after attacking her with a stun gun in January has rejected a plea bargain that would have dropped sex assault- and weapons charges if he copped to lesser crimes.
Brian K. Session, 47, now will face a grand jury. If indicted and convicted, he could face life in prison, according to the Morris County Prosecutor’s Office.
“He is rejecting the plea offer at this time,” Public Defender Sean O’Connor told Superior Court Judge Thomas Critchley Jr. on Thursday in Morristown. “My client still is adamant in his denial of certain aspects of the charges against him.”
Session, who is being held at the Morris County Jail, did not appear at the brief hearing.
Morris County Assistant Prosecutor Meg Rodriguez did not comment about Session’s decision to reject the state’s offer, which would have required him to serve at least 15 years of an 18-year sentence in exchange for confessing to kidnapping and five burglaries.
At a prior hearing, Rodriguez said Session could face life behind bars if convicted, based on a rap sheet that includes at least 10 prior convictions dating to 1990.
O’Conner told the court on Thursday that his client realizes any future plea offers won’t be as generous as this one.
Dropping the three aggravated sexual assault charges against Session would have freed him from having to register as a sex offender under Megan’s Law.
Session confessed to breaking into three apartments on Ridgedale Avenue around Nov. 15, 2017, attempting to break into three more there, and burglarizing two Hill Street apartments on Dec. 5, according to authorities.
The alleged rape occurred in an unnamed apartment on the morning of Jan. 18, 2018.
Nearby homeowners and tenants said they were not warned of unsolved break-ins, or notified that a suspected rapist was on the loose.
At a special public meeting convened by Mayor Tim Dougherty, Police Chief Pete Demnitz said he was prohibited from discussing sensitive ongoing investigations. But he pledged to report all burglaries to the general public.