Hours after taking him in for questioning, Philadelphia Police charged an East Germantown man in connection with a series of four rapes of girls ranging in age from 12 to 17 years old.
Among the charges that Antuane Brown, 22, of the 1100 block of E. Price St., faces are rape, unlawful restraint, false imprisonment and unlicensed possession of a firearm. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for June 25.
Brown’s mother Tina told NewsWorks content partner NBC10 that “I’m sure he’s innocent; I don’t have anything else to say.”
In separate 2009 cases, drug charges against Brown were dismissed due to lack of prosecuton and burglary charges were withdrawn, according to court records.
A $2,500 reward had been offered for information in the case.
Details of the crimes
The most recent incident occurred on Sunday outside of the Lonnie Young Recreation Center.
At 12:30 a.m., a 17-year-old victim walking in the 1100 block of E. Chelten Ave. was approached by an unknown male believed to be the suspect.
The victim was initially directed to a vehicle at gunpoint, but was instead pushed toward the entrance of the recreation center. While not in the building itself, the victim was sexually assaulted inside the entrance gate, according to Darby.
“This incident clearly indicated we had a pattern,” said Darby.
The first case involved a 12-year-old girl being assaulted at 7:30 a.m. on March 19. The victim, who was waiting for a school bus near Anderson and Price streets, was led at gunpoint into a nearby alley.
On April 23, a 17-year-old victim was walking alone on the 900 block of E. Chelten Ave at 11:30 p.m. when she was approached by a male who produced a gun and forced her into a nearby commercial property where the assault took place. Police also reviewed surveillance footage in which the suspect is seen riding a dark-colored mountain bike.
Then, at 10:40 p.m. on May 19, a 15-year-old female victim was walking home from a friend’s house on the 6000 block of Wister St. when she observed the suspect riding a bike.
Early Wednesday morning, Philadelphia Police serving a search warrant at Brown’s home brought him in for questioning and seized a mountain bike believed to be similar to the one that the serial rapist was seen riding.