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Suspect in Hannah Graham case indicted in separate 2005 rape case

Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr.
Shown is an undated booking photograph of Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr.
(Galveston County Sheriff’s Office in Texas)

The man suspected of abducting University of Virginia student Hannah Graham last month was indicted Monday in a separate 2005 case. The indictment alleges that Jesse Leroy Matthew Jr. abducted, sexually assaulted and tried to kill a woman.

The indictment, filed in Fairfax County, Va., Circuit Court, accuses Matthew, 32, of committing three felonies against the woman in September 2005. It says he attempted to kill her “willfully, deliberately, intentionally and with premeditation”; abducted her with intent to defile; and penetrated her “against her will, by force, threat or intimidation.”

The woman was 26 years old at the time and is cooperating in the case, Fairfax County prosecutor Raymond F. Morrogh said in a news conference. He declined to say whether the attack against the woman was random or targeted, and he would not provide details about the investigation or evidence, saying he had to preserve the integrity of the case.

On Sept. 24 of this year, Matthew was arrested in Texas on suspicion of abducting Graham with intent to defile. The 18-year-old had vanished the morning of Sept. 13. She had been at a bar in Charlottesville, Va., the night she disappeared, and police have released surveillance videos that show her running and stumbling.

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In connection with the Graham case, Matthew is also charged with a fugitive count and with giving false information to an officer.

On Saturday, police found what they suspect are Graham’s remains

Matthew is also linked to a similar October 2009 case. Police said last month that his arrest provided “a new forensic link” in the disappearance and death of another female student. Morgan D. Harrington, a 20-year-old who attended Virginia Tech, vanished during a concert on the University of Virginia campus, police said at the time. Her remains were discovered the following January. 

For news about crime and more, follow @raablauren on Twitter.

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