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Former inmate sneaks into New York jail, faces burglary charges

March 02, 2013|By Marisa Gerber

In an unusual twist, a former inmate and registered sex offender has been arrested on suspicion of sneaking into a New York jail.

Matthew Matagrano, 36, allegedly posed as a Department of Corrections investigator to con his way into Rikers Island, where he roamed the jail for at least a week, the Associated Press reported. The motive wasn't immediately clear.

Almost a decade ago, in the spring of 2004, the high-risk sex offender pretended to be a Department of Education official and sneaked into two schools in Queens, according to a statement released by the district attorney’s office for the borough, after Matagrano pleaded guilty to attempted burglary.

He tricked school officials into thinking  he was a quality-assurance inspector and got access to – and looked at –   11 confidential student files, according to the district attorney's statement.

He was convicted of sexual abuse in 1996, state records show, landing him on the sex offenders registry for life.

Matagrano, who was arrested by New York City's Department of Corrections on Thursday, faces a felony burglary charge and is being held at a Manhattan jail on a $50,000 bond, according to the department’s website.

No attorney information was listed on the state court’s website, which said Matagrano was slated to make an appearance in criminal court Saturday.

The Department of Corrections didn’t immediately respond to a call for comment.

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marisa.gerber@latimes.com


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