Search Continues for Rapist

FEBRUARY 16, 2007 - Posted at 3:09 p.m. CST, updated at 3:19 p.m. CST

JONESBORO, AR - Craighead and Greene County authorities continue their investigation of a Wednesday afternoon incident in which a local woman was brutally assaulted and raped in a rural area near the Craighead and Greene county line.

The suspect is described as a Hispanic male in his early thirties, with a slim build, dark hair and a goatee beard.  At the time of the rape, he was wearing a dark toboggan, jeans and a tan jacket.

The suspect apparently used deceptive tactics to get his victim to pull over her vehicle on County Road 318.  He apparently feigned distress, holding a bundle that appeared to be a baby.  When the victim pulled over, he told her his child was sick and could not breathe.  After gaining entry into her vehicle, he pistol-whipped the woman, drove to another location along the county line, and brutally sexually assaulted the victim with a screwdriver.  "It's a very brutal, shocking deal.  I've not seen anything like it in my 33 years of law enforcement," said Chief Deputy Rick Thomas of the Craighead County Sheriff's Department.

"I just want to stress the point for the ladies out there to be very cautious of what they're driving up on," said Thomas.

Anyone with information about the suspect is strongly encouraged to call Craighead County's Crimestoppers at 935-7867.

The victim has been released from a Jonesboro hospital, and is recovering at home.