Stamford man arrested for attempted sexual assault of a minor

STAMFORD — Police say they’ve arrested a man who tried to sexually assault a minor at a family party.

Police responded to a home on the east side of the city just after 8:30 p.m. on a report of a 6-year-old being assaulted by a male. When officers arrived, they learned that during the course of the party, Pedro Catalan-Veliz, 54, of Stamford, accosted a 6-year-old girl and held her against a vehicle in the driveway, away from view of the family.

A family friend was passing by walking her dog and saw Catalan-Veliz holding the victim with his pants down. A family member quickly intervened and others detained Catalan-Veliz until officers arrived.

Catalan-Veliz was taken into custody and charged with Risk of Injury to a Minor, Unlawful Restraint and Criminal Attempt at Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Minor. He is being held on a $200,000 bond and is to appear in court on September 8th.

Police say the child was not physically injured, and they are grateful for the timely intervention of the witness before the suspect was able to injure the child any further.

On Aug 27, ICE filed an immigration detainer and administrative arrest warrant on Pedro Caralan-Veliz, an illegally present citizen of Guatemala, with the Stamford  Police Department, following his local arrest on felony charges. Caralan was issued a final order of removal by a federal immigration judge in 1996, and he was previously removed (deported) from the United States in 1996, and again in 2000. ICE will seek to gain custody of Caralan should he be released from local custody. At which time his case will be presented for criminal re-entry charges (a federal felony) and/or ICE will reinstate his prior removal order.