FALL RIVER — A Level 3 sex offender from Fall River has been sentenced after he assaulted a couple and stole their car.

Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn III's Office says Richard DaSilva, 44, of Fall River, pleaded guilty last week in Fall River Superior Court to a multi-count indictment charging him with carjacking, indecent assault and battery on a person over 14, failure to register as a sex offender, and two counts of assault and battery.

DaSilva was sentenced to serve 12 years in prison with five years of probation upon his release.

On March 10, 2017, DaSilva befriended a woman and her boyfriend at the Belmont Club in Fall River and asked them for a ride. The couple obliged and drove to a Cumberland Farms in Somerset for gas. When the boyfriend went inside to pay for gas, DaSilva began to ask the woman in the car for sexual favors, offering her money. The woman refused, and DaSilva reached into the front seat and groped her breasts.

DaSilva became angry after the couple ordered him to leave the car, saying he had already given them gas money and demanded that they bring him to his destination. DaSilva instructed the female driver to bring him to Striper Circle in Dartmouth.

Once they arrived, the female driver was instructed to turn the car off. The woman refused to comply and DaSilva threatened the couple, claiming he had a gun. DaSilva grabbed the woman's hair and yanked her head back and forth.

The woman was able to open the door and throw herself out of the car. She ran to nearby homes for help as DaSilva repeatedly punched the male victim, telling him he would shoot him if he did not leave the car, as well.

After the male victim exited the car, DaSilva jumped into the driver's seat and sped off. The car and DaSilva were located four days later in Fall River near DaSilva's mother's home.

DaSilva had previously served prison and jail time for sexual assault, impersonating a police officer, kidnapping, and assault to rape.

“This is a very dangerous defendant who has a history of sexual assault and other violent crimes. He is preying on two innocent people who were just enjoying a night out.  This is an individual who needs to be kept off the streets for as long as possible to protect the public,” District Attorney Quinn said.  “Although well-intentioned, this case highlights the dangers of letting strangers into your car, especially in the middle of the night.”