Archive for Thursday, October 18, 2007

Suspect charged in 1997 rape case

KBI matches DNA from FBI database

October 18, 2007


More than a decade after a female Kansas University student was kidnapped and raped, Lawrence police say they've found the culprit.

A 34-year-old Lawrence man is being held in Douglas County Jail on $500,000 bond after he was picked up on a warrant Tuesday. He was charged with rape and aggravated kidnapping stemming from an incident in May 1997.

Police got a break in the case in August when fingerprints on file from the 1997 investigation were matched with prints of the suspect in the FBI's Automated Fingerprint Identification System, District Attorney Charles Branson said.

The suspect's prints were entered into the system following an arrest in a Johnson County case, Branson said. No information about that case was immediately available Wednesday.

The fingerprint match led police to obtain a warrant and collect a DNA sample from the suspect. That DNA matched DNA collected as evidence from the rape case, Branson said.

Police were notified of the fingerprint match by the Kansas Bureau of Investigation, Branson said.

The KBI periodically checks fingerprints from old, unsolved cases with those in the national database to see if there is a match as new prints are added to the system, Branson said.

Branson commended police for their efforts.

"It just shows that if you leave evidence behind, sooner or later we're going to find you," he said.

The Journal-World generally doesn't name sex crime suspects unless they are convicted.


skinny 10 years, 8 months ago

"The Journal-World generally doesn't name sex crime suspects unless they are convicted"

That is why we have to read the Kansa City Star or Topeka Capital to get the local news here!


Print the NEWS, this is a safety issue.

drake 10 years, 8 months ago

On October 16, 2007, Lawrence Police Detective Hanson arrested 34 year old Robert Edward Grey, of Lawrence, on charges of Rape and Aggravated Kidnapping.

jayhawks71 10 years, 8 months ago

I applaud and support the LJW's policy on not printing the names until convicted. I do not believe doing so is a case of protecting a criminal, it is a case of protecting an innocent person's name (innocent until proven guilty, anyone hear of that these days? Yeah, I didn't think so.). Once your name is dragged across the newspaper, when charges are dropped or one is found "not guilty" you will still be, in the mind's of many, "the rapist." Sorry, but the legal system is the ONLY standard for guilt or innocence, not the court of public opinion, which is fueled by what the newspaper prints.

I wish other news outlets would follow suit. I also think that the LJW, as the publisher of this site, should remove the posts of people who go ahead and post the name. As for the SUSPECT, he is in custody; how are you going to be safer by knowing the person's name when he is being held by police?

Haiku_Cuckoo 10 years, 8 months ago

That being said, I can not help but think about the poor guy they first investigated for the Atlanta Olympic bombings and how releasing his name ruined his life, and he was not only innocent, but a hero who was falsely accused.

Richard Jewell. He just died a few weeks ago. It was a shame how he was slandered.

whatupdown 10 years, 8 months ago

Innocent? then why the DNA and prints?other victims?

jayhawks71 10 years, 8 months ago

Whatup, WHO SAYS the DNA matched and the fingerprints matched? The police and the DA. Last I checked the police (thankfully) do not determine guilt or innocence and neither does the DA. Do you subscribe to the idea that the police are never wrong or purposefully misleading? That the DA might have his image in mind? How about that case at Duke University? Also, let's use our critical thinking skills a bit here and stop just swallowing everything we are fed. How many of you know much more about this case than what is included in the article above?

Zype 10 years, 8 months ago

''this is a safety issue''

The man is being held in prison. I am not sure I agree with you about his name being imperative to your security. Maybe if he was being allowed to wander the streets while his case was tried, but he's not.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.