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Mark Douglas Burns 69 Arrested for raping at least nine women in two states

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'Serial rapist' suspect: Mark Burns, 69, from Wyoming, is accused of raping at least nine women in two states between 1991-2001

A long-hauled truck driver from Utah has been arrested in connection to at least nine violent rapes in two different states going back decades - and police suspect there may be more victims out there.

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Police in Clearfield, Utah, police say 69-year-old Mark Douglas Burns was arrested on Wednesday after a years-long investigation using familial matching DNA samples in collaboration with a true-crime TV show.

Davis County Attorney’s Office so far has filed 17 first-degree felony charges against Burns.

A press release from the police department described Burns as a 'serial rapist.'

'The sexual assaults were incomprehensible, brutal and methodical attacks on females,' police said. 'In addition, family members were forced to watch the violent and repeated attacks.

According to the statement, the agency investigated multiple rapes in Clearfield between 1994 and 2001, and collected DNA evidence.

In 2003, a DNA warrant was obtained concerning additional sexual assaults that took place in 2001 and 2003, but at that time, those rapes were not linked to the sexual assaults that were reported in the 1990s.
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This sketch shows then then-unidentified man suspected of sexually assaulting women in Utah and Wyoming in the 1990s and 2000s

In 2010, with the advancement of DNA technology, four more sexual assaults were linked to the 2001 and 2003 cases in Clearfield when the DNA evidence was entered into the Combine DNA Index System (CODIS).

Eventually, DNA linked a total of nine cold-case rapes that occurred in Rock Springs, Wyoming, in 1991; Riverdale City, Utah, in 1992; Ogden, Utah, in 1993; Clearfield, Utah in 1994 and 1995; Laramie, Wyoming, in 1996; Layton, Utah, in 1997, and two more cases that were reported in Clearfield in 2000 and 2001.

A police probable cause statement cited by Deseret News says that in the 2000 incident, a woman said she was asleep when a stranger woke her up and threatened to 'cut her throat' if she said a word. He then blindfolded her and proceeded to rape her multiple times before tying her up and leaving.

The 2001 case involved a home invasion during which a woman and her 19-year-old were both raped at gunpoint in front of their male family members.

According to the police, in each of the rapes, the attacker bound the victim and proceeded to rape her repeatedly over an extended period of time.

All the victims reported that their assailant smelled of alcohol, gained access to their homes through sliding glass doors, and was armed with a gun or a knife.

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Modus operandi: In each case, the victims were bound and raped repeatedly in front of family members by an attacker who smelled of alcohol and was armed with a knife or a gun

Police departments in Utah and Wyoming worked with the TNT television show Cold Justice Sex Crimes to link the nine cases together using DNA matches, and later enlisted the help of genetic genealogist Dr Barbara Rae-Venter to study previously collected samples to discover a potential familiar DNA relationship.

Over the past few months, detectives followed several leads before ultimately zeroing in on Mark Burns, of Ogden, as the prime suspect.

His DNA was then tested and confirmed to match the DNA warrant profile connecting him to all nine rapes, according to the police.

The Davis County District Attorney’s Office has charged Burns with eight counts of aggravated sexual assault, six counts of aggravated kidnapping, two counts of aggravated burglary and one count of aggravated robbery.

Laramie and Rock Spring police departments in Wyoming are expected to file additional charges stemming from the rapes that took place in those cities.

Investigators suspect that there may be additional victims out there, especially in Western United States, given Burns’ occupation as a long-haul truck driver.

'These sexual assaults have caused a tremendous amount of pain and grief with all victims and family members,' the police press release stated. 'Because of the grievous nature of these crimes, detectives believe there are more victims and do not believe Mr Burns suddenly stopped committing such heinous crimes since 2001.'

Burns was convicted of rape in North Carolina in 1974 and served a lengthy prison sentence before moving to Utah, a charging document states.

DNA match leads to arrest of truck driver, 69, suspected of raping at least nine women | Daily Mail Online
 
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