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Kent Police arrest 15-year-old boy for allegedly raping two teens on East Hill | Update

Kent Police released this composite sketch of a suspect wanted in connection with two rapes Oct. 26-27 on the East Hill. Kent Police arrested a 15-year-old boy Monday in connection with the crimes. - COURTESY DRAWING, Kent Police
Kent Police released this composite sketch of a suspect wanted in connection with two rapes Oct. 26-27 on the East Hill. Kent Police arrested a 15-year-old boy Monday in connection with the crimes.
— image credit: COURTESY DRAWING, Kent Police

Kent Police arrested a 15-year-old boy Monday for investigation of two counts of first-degree rape and first-degree kidnapping in connection with attacks on a 17-year-old girl and 19-year-old woman Oct. 29-30 on the East Hill.

Officers arrested the boy about noon Monday at Kentwood High School in Covington. The boy is a Kentwood student, according to probable cause documents. He was taken into custody without incident.

In the first case, a 19-year-old woman was accosted at about 10 p.m. Oct. 29 in the 12900 block of Kent Kangley Road. The second incident occurred at around 7:30 p.m. Oct. 30 in the 26200 block of 116th Avenue Southeast, just north of the Kent Kangley Road.

In each case, a boy approached the teens after they had departed Metro buses, inferred that he had a weapon, and then forced each teen to a secluded spot where she was reportedly assaulted.

The girl and woman provided a similar description of the boy. Kent Police released sketches of the suspect last week. The drawings generated a number of tips. Initial reports identified the suspect as a light-skinned black male about 18 or 19 years old, about 5 feet 8 inches tall with a slender build.

As the investigation moved forward, information about the 15 year old came to the attention of detectives from several sources and eventually led to the boy's arrest.

“We are extremely happy to have this suspect in custody," said Kent Police Lt. Pat Lowery. “Our hope is that this arrest will help restore the community’s sense of security."

Detectives found video surveillance from a chiropractic office in the 12900 block of Southeast Kent Kangley Road that showed the boy and the 19-year-old woman as they walked back behind the south end of the building and turned left out of camera view. A short while later, the video showed the two again as they walked back from where they came toward Kent Kangley Road. The boy was riding an orange BMX bicycle directly behind the woman.

When officers interviewed the boy, he told them he was a Kentwood student but had been expelled the prior week for fighting. He told police he used to have an orange bike, but it had been stolen. The officer noted that the boy had a white bicycle that appeared reddish orange underneath the white paint.

Police investigators will continue to sort through the physical evidence and statements collected during the past week. The boy is being held in the King County Juvenile Detention Center in Seattle.

Charges are expected to be filed this week by the King County Prosecuting Attorney's Office against the boy.

A King County Juvenile Court judge found probable cause Tuesday to detain the boy until next Monday, said Ian Goodhew, spokesman for the Prosecuting Attorney's Office, in an email. Prosecutors are expected to make a filing decision on charges by Thursday, Nov. 10.

Because the boy is 15, charges will first be handled in Juvenile Court. Prosecutors can request the Juvenile Court to decline the case and send it to King County Superior Court to try an individual as an adult, but the decision is a discretionary one made by the court.

Under Washington State law, an offender alleged to have committed a crime of rape is automatically in adult court if they are 16-17 years old, Goodhew said. The boy turns 16 in March.

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