Update: Lyft Driver Gets 7 Years For Fondling Pre-Teen Prospect Park Passenger Separate Times

A former U.S. military member from Morris County who was convicted of sexually assaulting a Passaic County pre-teen while working as a Lyft driver was sentenced to seven years in state prison.

Julio Mejia

Julio Mejia


Julio Mejia, 43, of Wharton also must register as a sex offender and remain under lifetime parole supervision, under the sentence handed down by Superior Court Judge Joseph A. Portelli in Paterson.

Mejia rejected a plea deal after investigators said the underage Prospect Park girl told them he had sex with her after she took a Lyft ride in August 2019 and then again after several weeks of texting.

He took his chances with a trial and was convicted by a jury in Superior Court in Paterson last September of sexual assault, criminal sexual contact, enticing and child endangerment.

“At the time of his arrest, [Mejia] was an active member of the armed services,” Passaic County Prosecutor Camelia Valdes said following the Sept. 20 verdicts.

She didn’t specify which branch.

Portelli sentenced Mejia to seven years each for the sexual assault and luring convictions on Friday, Feb. 9, but ordered both to run concurrently and not consecutively. He did add lifetime parole, however.

Passaic County Assistant Prosecutor Alanna M. Jereb secured the verdict and sentence.

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