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Rape Victims Acted Fantasy Role : Police Say Suspect May Be Linked to 12 Sex Attacks

Times Staff Writer

A rape suspect arrested in Simi Valley Wednesday night may be linked to attacks on a dozen Los Angeles women who were forced to dress in “teeny-bopper” clothing, police said.

William Earl Miller, 36, of Glendale, was arrested at the home of a relative, said Los Angeles Police Detective Gary Barthelmess. Miller was taken into custody after authorities checked out a tip on a license plate, he said.

The tip came after a rape that occurred Sunday, Barthelmess said, in which a man offered a ride to a 36-year-old San Fernando Valley hitchhiker and her male companion. After dropping off the male companion at his home, the driver pulled a gun on the woman and ordered her to perform “fantasy roles” while wearing a miniskirt he carried in his car, the woman told police. “He asked her to dress in teeny-bopper clothing, like miniskirts,” Barthelmess said. “He then instructed her to go through a fantasy game, which ended with a sexual attack.”

Memorized License Plate

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Police arrested Miller after the woman’s hitchhiking companion gave police a license plate number of the car he said the pair rode in. He told police he routinely memorizes license plates of those who give him rides.

Miller, a graphic artist in a small print shop in Van Nuys, was arrested on suspicion of rape and jailed at the Van Nuys police station in lieu of $100,000 bail.

Barthelmess said the Sunday rape appears to fit a pattern involving at least 11 other attacks in the Los Angeles area in which the victims were ordered to dress in similar clothing before they were forced to perform various sex acts. In each case, Barthelmess said, the victims were picked up by a motorist and then threatened with a handgun. The attacks date back to November, 1982.

Barthelmess said the 12 incidents included four in North Hollywood, six in Hollywood and two in other areas of the San Fernando Valley. All of the victims were hitchhiking or waiting at bus stops, the detective said. One of the attacks was made on a 16-year-old girl.

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Miller will be arraigned on Tuesday in Van Nuys Superior Court, Barthelmess said.


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