Authorities in Washington state have made an arrest in the nearly 20-year-old rapes of two women who were brutally attacked in 2003 and 2004.
According to CBS News, DNA evidence linked Kenneth Downing, 47, to the unsolved attacks in the Pullman area in the early 2000s. According to the report, authorities made the DNA match after a relative of Downing’s entered genetic information into a geneology database to find out more information about their family background. The information matched previously collected evidence that had DNA material authorities had not been able to identify previously.
Downing was reportedly arrested on Thursday at a construction site in Spokane where he was working.
The suspect, 47-year-old Kenneth Downing, was arrested at a construction site in North Spokane. https://t.co/oK4XO662bJ
— KREM 2 NEWS (@KREM2) March 18, 2022
According to the report, the suspect’s DNA matched evidence taken from multiple crime scenes. Downing is accused of breaking into a home and repeatedly raping a woman at gunpoint in 2003. In 2004, he allegedly broke into another home and tied up one rooommate while raping the other. He was also armed at the time of that attack.
“So very serious, very dangerous, very violent crimes,” a prosecutor reportedly said in court on Friday, when Downing’s bail was set at $5 million.
Downing is reportedly a longtime resident of Elk, and is married with children.
The suspect is facing numerous charges, including four counts of rape, three counts of assault, and three counts of unlawful imprisonment with sexual motivation.