January 25, 1995 in City

Victim Was ‘Like A Mother’ To Rape Suspect Teenager Was Childhood Friend Of Woman’s Son

By The Spokesman-Review
 

One of the two teenagers accused of raping and kidnapping a Spokane woman Monday is a childhood friend of the victim’s son and someone she watched grow up, police said.

“This woman was like a mother to him,” Spokane police Detective Craig Brenden said. “It’s unbelievable.”

William Caietti and Johnas Bower, both 18, were caught hours after the alleged assault when they ran a roadblock and led police on a 10-mile chase near Grangeville, Idaho.

The victim, who reported the rape about 5 a.m. after she managed to escape, identified Caietti as one attacker, police said. Her son provided detectives with names of other friends who hang around with Caietti, and she picked out Bower’s picture as the second suspect.

Caietti came to the woman’s house on West 10th about 1 a.m. looking for her son. He was with Bower and a juvenile who was not identified.

The woman, 36, allowed Caietti and his friends inside to wait for her son and then permitted them to spend the night when her son didn’t show up. Caietti and Bower are street kids, their parents told police.

After she went to bed, the three boys drank a six-pack of beer. Caietti and Bower then took off all of their clothes, pulled out a .22-caliber semiautomatic handgun and walked into the woman’s room, police said.

The third boy, a juvenile, tried to talk his friends out of harming the woman, but when they didn’t listen he left the house, ran downtown and called his mother. He cooperated with police and will not be charged with any crimes.

Caietti and Bower tied up the woman with a telephone cord, forced her face-down on a mattress and took turns raping her, police said. The woman told police that while one assaulted her, the other held the gun to her head.

A single shot was fired inside the bedroom, apparently to intimidate the woman, Brenden said Tuesday.

The men then loaded the woman’s car with her television set, a pair of hiking boots, some food stamps and a carton of cigarettes and put her in the back seat. They drove to the Valley, stopping briefly at a house where they got more ammunition for the gun, the woman told police.

They then drove to a house at Sixth and Crestline, where Bowers tried to sell the television set, Brenden said. While he was inside, Caietti tried to assault the woman again but she resisted and he went inside to get the gun, Brenden said.

The woman freed her hands while the man was gone and ran from the car. She hid for about 10 minutes in a nearby yard and waited for the men to drive away before seeking help. After trying three houses, one resident finally agreed to open the door.

“What this woman went through is hard to comprehend,” Brenden said. “They hit her in the head, verbally assaulted her and physically abused her and then took her away and tried to do it again.”

Caietti and Bower left Sixth and Crestline and drove to the Qwik-Stop at E8119 Sprague, where they fired four shots at a store clerk, took cash from the register and stole $17 worth of gasoline, police said.

Police initially said the rape victim was in the car during the holdup, but corrected that statement Tuesday.

The men were caught a few hours later in Idaho when an all-points bulletin went out about the stolen car and police started chasing the men.

Brenden asked prosecutors to charge the men with first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping, armed robbery and taking a motor vehicle without permission. Other charges may follow, police said.

Both men are being held in the Idaho County Jail with bail set at $100,000. Both have prior convictions for burglary and assault.


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