EAST ST. LOUIS, IL (KTVI) – It`s the first of a kind criminal charge for St. Clair County, IL. State`s Attorney Brendan Kelly has filed 2 charges against a DNA profile instead of charging someone by name.
The charges are in connection to a woman raped after being forced off an East St. Louis Street at gunpoint in 2005.
Investigators say the same DNA profile has been collected from four other sexual assaults. There were two sexual attacks in 1997 then 3 more in 2005. One of the cases involved a victim forced at gunpoint in St. Louis City and driven to East St. Louis where she was raped.
Kelly explained that charging the DNA helps prevent the case from going beyond the statute of limitations on the crime.
‘We may not know his specific name but we have his DNA and we`re charging him,’ said Kelly.
‘The forensic scientists at the Fairview Heights lab are actually the ones who pieced it together,’ said Lt. Dave Wasmuth, Illinois State Police.
The hope is that the suspected, serial rapist will eventually be arrested.
‘There will be a DNA match somewhere and at that point we will have already charged them,’ explained Kelly. ‘We could wait until we know who it is but then it might be too late.’
Kelly contacted the victim in the case in which charges have been filed. He says she has moved out of Illinois but is relieved to here about the person`s DNA being charged.
‘She was very happy to know that there`s going to be a chance for justice in her case,’ said Kelly.
Wasmuth praised the State`s Attorney for filing the charge and hopes there will be similar prosecutions in the future.
‘It could open a whole new avenue for charging suspects when they`re truly unidentified by name and date of birth,’ predicts Wasmuth.
Kelly praised Illinois State Police investigators and a victim willing to prosecute.