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Thursday, July 9, 2020  Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Rape charge filed against theft, assault suspect

A man already facing a litany of charges for allegedly assaulting and stealing from multiple women is now facing a charge of second-degree rape after the victim said she recognized him in news reports earlier this year.

Michael J. McNearney, 24, was ordered held on $75,000 bond on the rape charge during a brief court appearance Tuesday.

The victim reported the alleged rape to police in 2012, but she only knew the man she met on an online dating website as Mike, according to court documents. She saw McNearney in news reports in March after he was arrested on other charges and recognized him, documents say.

Police say McNearney meets his victims online, through social media and at local bars. He often claimed to be an active-duty Marine but has no record of service, according to the Spokane County Sheriff’s Office. His user name on the Plenty of Fish dating website was “MarineMike77,” according to court documents.

In early March McNearney was charged with theft, forcible indecent liberties, unlawful imprisonment and domestic violence assault. The charges involve several women. In the indecent liberties case, McNearney is accused of grabbing the crotch of a Davenport Hotel bartender as she walked by him with a tray of drinks.

The unlawful imprisonment charge is related to an incident in a Davenport Hotel room in February. The victim recorded the assault without his knowledge on her cellphone, according to court documents. In the recording, the victim reportedly can be heard struggling and telling McNearney to stop and let her go.

McNearney was free on bail on a charge of domestic violence assault by strangulation when he was arrested in February. In the 2013 strangulation case, the victim told police that McNearney demanded to see her identification when he was working as a bouncer at Irv’s Bar. McNearney then allegedly showed up at her home uninvited, court documents say. She agreed to go out to breakfast with him, but McNearney quickly became controlling and threatening, the victim told police.

Nearly all the victims also said McNearney pressured and threatened them until they gave him money or credit cards, according to court documents.

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