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Raleigh police chargd two men with separate sexual assaults dating back to 1998

Raleigh News and Observer
Raleigh police took two men into custody this week in cold-case sexual assaults dating back more than 25 years ago.

Tracy Lamont Thompson, 51, was charged Wednesday with reported rapes, a kidnapping and assaults in 1998, 2007 and 2009, the Raleigh Police Department said.

Lontren Lawrence Walker, 49, was charged Friday with a reported sexual assault in 1998.

The men’s alleged crimes are not connected, but their arrests come after state-mandated testing of sexual assault kits through the Sexual Assault Kit Initiative. The N.C. Department of Justice received a grant in 2019 for the initiative, which is run out of the State Crime Lab.

Thompson was charged with the following felonies: first-degree kidnapping, second-degree rape, second-degree sexual offense, attempted second-degree rape and assault by strangulation.

He previously served a 39-month prison sentence for several felonies, that included a 2008 assault on a female, according to the N.C. Department of Adult Correction.

Walker was charged with first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping, attempted murder and assault by strangulation.

National database link suspects to crimes

The Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) is a national database used to match DNA from convicted offenders, crime-scene evidence and missing persons with that of untested sexual assault kits.

Last month, the State Crime Lab registered 86 CODIS hits, or matches, according to Nazneen Ahmed, spokesperson for the Attorney General Josh Stein.

Some 1,268 sexual assault kits were matched between July 1, 2023, and Thursday, March 21, potentially aiding in further investigations of more cold cases.

More than 93% of older sexual assault kits in the state have been tested under the Survivor Act requirement.

Last October, the Department of Justice said there were 16,235 older kits in local law enforcement custody, and about 12,000 of them require or may require testing based on the Survivor Act.

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