Police: Tourist robbed, sexually assaulted in NF

Posted at 6:27 PM, May 11, 2016
and last updated 2016-05-12 17:45:06-04

Investigators in Niagara Falls are hoping one woman's brave return to the United States will send a message to any criminal looking to prey on tourists.

According to the Niagara County District Attorney's Office, Koyuki Nakahara was robbed and sexually assaulted last Christmas when she was visiting Niagara Falls.

Assistant District Attorney Robert Zucco says police arrested 44-year-old Robert Macleod a few days after the attack. Police charged him with robbery and offered him a plea deal, but Macleod turned it down.

"The misconception that they have is that most people will not return to Niagara Falls to participate in the prosecution of the case," said Zucco.

But if Macleod thought the distance between Niagara Falls and Japan would keep Nakahara from seeking justice, he was wrong.

Zucco said the DA's office flew Nakahara into Niagara County last week so she could testify in pretrial proceedings. 

Police announced Thursday Macleod has been indicted on robbery, assault and sexual abuse charges as a result of Nakahara's testimony. 

She is prepared to come back again if the case goes to trial.

Officials say about 8 million people visit Niagara Falls each year. Over the last two years, nine serious crimes were reported.  

Macleod is out on bail but faces prison time if convicted.