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Long Beach man arrested in rape of 83-year-old woman

September 21, 2009 | 11:41 am

A Long Beach man has been arrested on suspicion of raping an 83-year-old legally blind woman in her home after a DNA sample taken following a domestic violence arrest tied him to the crime, authorities said.

Antonio D. Freeman was arrested by sheriff's detectives Friday after authorities learned that his DNA matched that of the suspect in a prowler rape earlier this year in Norwalk, said Los Angeles County Sheriff Lee Baca said.

The prowler broke into the woman's home about 5:30 a.m. May 1 at the Benton Bay condominiums in Norwalk.

"The victim was awakened by the sound of glass breaking," Baca said. "She was confronted by the suspect, who then forcefully pulled her upstairs and sexually assaulted her."

The assailant then ransacked the woman's home, took some money and fled. Investigators recovered DNA of the suspect from the crime scene.

Freeman was arrested July 11 by Long Beach police on suspicion of spousal abuse. Because of the level of the crime, before his release Freeman submitted a DNA sample, which was compared to the state database. A sheriff's department criminalist confirmed a match last week between Freeman's DNA and the rape scene DNA.

Freeman was re-arrested Friday after investigators conducted surveillance on him. Detectives say Freeman has not been connected to any other crimes.

The sexual assault victim's home had twice before been the subject of break-ins. But detectives say they have not connected Freeman to those burglaries.

-- Richard Winton