MARION COUNTY, Fla. – A U.S. Army soldier stationed at Fort Eustis was arrested November 6 in connection to a violent rape case from 2009 in central Florida.
The Marion County Sheriff’s Office reports Timothy Damon Epps, 26, recently provided his DNA during a criminal investigation being conducted by the military.
The DNA was placed in the national Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) where it matched samples taken from a 2009 rape case in Marion County.
On June 30, 2009, a 67-year-old woman reported that an unknown black male knocked on her door and falsely identified himself as a law enforcement officer. When the woman opened the door, the suspect forced himself inside the home, threatened her with a gun and dragged her into a bedroom.
The suspect then tied the woman to the bed using telephone cords and belts before raping her.
He then stole $50 from the victim and left.
DNA was obtained from the sexual assault kit collected from the victim and stored in the CODIS system until the match was found.
Investigators were notified of the match in the system on October 25. Marion County Sheriff’s Office Major Crimes Detective Daniel Pinder dug into Epps’ history and discovered he lived less than two miles from the victim when the crime occurred.
Detectives traced Epps to Fort Eustis and Detective Pinder traveled to the base November 6 to interview him.
Epps immediately requested an attorney and was arrested by the Newport News Police Department on MCSO’s warrant for Sexual Battery with a Deadly Weapon, Burglary with Battery and Impersonating a Police Officer. Epps has since been transported back to Ocala and is currently being held in the Marion County Jail.
Detectives believe Epps may be responsible for several similar crimes in other jurisdictions. He has lived in Florida, Missouri, Virginia and Kentucky.
Anyone with any information on other crimes Epps may have been involved in, or if you believe you are a victim, you are urged to contact Detective Pinder at 352-368-3508.