Sirens & Gavels

Suspect arrested in Spokane rape from '99

A suspect was arrested this week in a rape that's been unsolved for more than 10 years.

Robert C. Graham Jr., 30, appeared in Superior Court today via video from the jail, where he's been since his arrest on Tuesday.

He's accused of raping a woman on Sept. 6, 1999, as she walked to work on Market Street near Green Street about 4:10 a.m. The woman described her attacker as a young man she'd never seen before with "straight brown hair and pointy nose," according to court documents.

Last fall, the Washington State Crime Lab matched DNA evidence from the crime with Graham's DNA, which had only recently been obtained, said Spokane police Detective Harlen Harden.

Harden, the detective first assigned to the case in 1999, described the victim as "relieved" by the suspect's arrest.

"It's been pretty hard on her," Harden said.

Graham, a level 1 sex offender, was convicted of third-degree rape involving a 15-year-old victim in 2000.

He’s lived in the Deer Park and Colfax area all his life and has been employed at a construction company for about a year, his public defender said. "Mr. Graham has worked very hard to turn his life around," she said. "The merits of this are to be determined at a later date."

Graham's bond was set today at $25,000 for one count of second-degree rape.




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