NEW BEDFORD, MASS. (WHDH) - A Worcester man was recently indicted on rape charges after a sexual assault kit linked to a case in 2010 was finally tested for DNA in February, officials announced Friday.
Scot Trudeau, 47, has been indicted by a Bristol County grand jury on charges of aggravated rape and assault and battery in connection with the cold case rape of a 23-year-old woman in New Bedford, according to Bristol District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn.
In March 2010, the victim was walking along Coffin Avenue in the city’s north end section when she was violently attacked by two men, the DA’s office said. She was then struck in the head and dragged to a secluded area, where Trudeau allegedly raped her while the other man held her down.
Investigators noted that the victim could not see or identify the men because they were wearing hooded sweatshirts.
After being taken to St. Luke’s Hospital for treatment, the victim submitted to a sex assault evidence collection kit. That kit was one of more than 1,100 from Bristol County alone that was never fully tested by the state lab, according to the DA’s office.
“After our office became aware of the scope and breadth of the problem with untested rape kits in Bristol County and throughout the state, we took action to obtain a federal grant. We then began the painstaking process of inventorying and prioritizing all untested rape kits in our county,” the DA’s office said in a news release.
In February, the rape kit connected to this case was tested and resulted in the recovery of a DNA profile that led to the arrest of Trudeau.
“If this victim’s rape kit had been fully tested in 2010, it would have matched to the defendant’s DNA sample provided after his federal conviction in 2015 for child sexual exploitation,” the DA’s office added. “Furthermore, if we had not undertaken this initiative and brought this issue to light statewide, the kit would likely never have been fully tested and the case would have remained unsolved. “
“More often than not, a perpetrator of sexual violence is a repeat offender. It’s not a one-time deal,” said Kim Dawkins runs Pathways for Change, a rape crisis center serving central Massachusetts. “So, this is another way of helping to prevent future sexual violence from happening.”
Trudeau’s indictment is the first connected to the Untested Rape Kit Initiative, which is an ongoing push to get 1,148 previously untested Bristol County rape kits fully tested by a private lab under a Sexual Assault Kit Initiative grant that was obtained by Quinn in 2019.
Trudeau is currently on federal probation after serving a federal sentence for attempting to travel to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor.
He is due in court Tuesday for a dangerousness hearing.
“Some survivors will be relieved, she will be angry, some will be triggered,” Dawkins explained. DA Quinn said in this case, the survivor was relieved to hear the news.
“Hopefully there’ll be additional charges,” he said. “At least the satisfaction that we’ve done something to test, fully test, all of these kits which is what should have happened.”
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