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Virginia missing student suspect charged in 2005 sex assault
October 20, 2014 / 5:28 PM / 3 years ago

Virginia missing student suspect charged in 2005 sex assault

RICHMOND Va. (Reuters) - A grand jury on Monday indicted the suspect in the disappearance of a University of Virginia student with attempted murder, abduction and sexual assault in a 2005 attack.

Jesse Matthew is pictured in this September 26, 2014, booking photo provided by the Albermarle-Charlottesville jail. REUTERS/Albermarle-Charlottesville jail/Handout

The suspect, Jesse Matthew Jr., 32, is jailed in Charlottesville, Virginia, charged in the disappearance of Hannah Graham, an 18-year-old sophomore.

She was last seen with Matthew on Sept. 13 and searchers discovered human remains on Saturday near Charlottesville, site of the university. The state medical examiner’s office in Richmond is trying to identify the remains.

In Monday’s rape indictment, Fairfax County prosecutor Ray Morrogh said the detective had kept in touch with the alleged victim since the attack. She was identified in the indictment by the initials “R.G.”

“It’s fair to say that she’s grateful that the case will go forward to whatever resolution it comes to,” he told reporters.

The Fairfax County grand jury charged Matthew with attempted murder in Fairfax city during or after an abduction with intent to defile on Sept. 24, 2005. He also was accused of abduction with intent to defile, and sexual penetration with an object.

Virginia State Police have said forensic evidence links Matthew to Morgan Harrington, a Virginia Tech student who disappeared after leaving a Charlottesville concert in October 2009. Her body was discovered in 2010.

Hannah Graham, 18, is shown in this handout photo provided by the City of Charlottesville Police Department in Charlottesville, Virginia, October 18, 2014. REUTERS/City of Charlottesville Police Department/Handout via Reuters

Charlottesville television station WTVR has reported that forensic evidence had linked the Harrington case to the Fairfax attack.

The human remains were found on an abandoned property and authorities were searching for clues about 10 miles (16 km) south of Charlottesville.

Sergeant Dale Terry with the Chesterfield County Sheriff’s Office, who found the remains, has told a television station that they were unburied and not far from the road.

He said there was no crushing of bones and the skull appeared intact. A pair of black pants, similar to ones Graham was wearing, were nearby.

Matthew was arrested near Galveston, Texas, on Sept. 24, a day after he was charged with abduction with intent to defile in the Graham case.

He was also the main suspect in a 2002 campus rape investigation while attending Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia. No charges were filed.

He attended Christopher Newport University in Newport News, Virginia, from January to October 2003. A football player, Matthew left the team shortly after a report of an on-campus sexual assault, the university has said.

Additional reporting by Ian Simpson; Editing by Eric Walsh and Sandra Maler

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