Auburn man charged with rape for alleged beating of homeless woman

King County Sheriff’s deputies say Edgar Lee Raney raped a 28-year-old homeless woman, beat her with a crow bar and dropped a car jack on her back in a residential garage in the 29700 block of 39th Place South before she escaped and ran to seek help.

And that Raney, in tears, according to court documents, later wondered aloud to detectives, why the woman, on whom he had allegedly forced oral sex, and who sustained serious injuries in the assault, tried to fight him off.

Last week the King County Prosecutor charged the 56-year-old Auburn man with first-degree rape. He is in King County jail on $1 million bail.

Raney has two armed robbery convictions from Alaska dating to 1982, a prior second-degree murder conviction from King County Court in 2001 and a prior second-degree assault conviction in 2001.

As Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Nicole L. Weston told the court in asking for the high bail, should Raney be convicted, he faces a mandatory life sentence under Washington state’s three strikes law.

“The defendant brutally beat the victim with a crow bar and a number of other objects. … The defendant forced the victim to perform oral sex on the defendant. … The defendant admits to assaulting the victim. … The state is extremely concerned for the community’s safety if the defendant is released,” Weston said.

As the woman told detectives, she had known her assailant for six months and had been warming herself in his car in Tacoma for a few hours before he drove her to a tri-level house where she had never been and led her into a 3-4-stall garage attached to the house, stuffed with Christmas lights, bags and boxes.

The woman went to use the bathroom, she told detectives, and when she returned, she said, the man removed a phone lanyard he had around his neck and tried to strangle her with it, cutting off her breath as she tried to fight him off.

According to the account, “Edgar” threatened to shoot the woman and implied he had a gun. Although she never saw a gun, she told detectives, she could see something through his pants pocket that might have been a gun. According to the account, the man then started to punch, kick and bite the woman, dropped a car jack on her back, hit her with a crow bar, slammed her head into the concrete, forced her into oral sex and repeatedly groped her.

When the woman heard Raney leave the garage in his car, she told detectives, she ran through a field and climbed a cyclone fence to get help. At about 5 a.m. a homeowner called 911 to report that a badly-beaten woman was banging on her back windows, asking for help.

A detective met the woman at St. Francis Hospital in Federal Way and found her face swollen and bloody, her right eye almost swollen shut and turning purple, and with profuse bleeding from her face and forehead, according to the account.

When authorities contacted the couple who lived at the house where the attack had allegedly occurred, according to detectives, they said they let a man named “Leroy” keep his things in their garage, and that his physical description aligned with the woman’s portrayal of her attacker.

Looking into the garage, officers saw blood on the concrete floor in two places, and Christmas lights, matching the woman’s description. Armed with a search warrant, authorities found Raney’s bloody glasses, broken jewelry by a large pool of blood, a car jack with a broken handle near the blood and bloody clothing.

When Raney returned to the house, officers took him to the Lake Dolloff station of the Sheriff’s Office for an interview. At first, although he showed no sign of injuries, he allegedly claimed that the woman had hit him with a crow bar in the neck. He later admitted to striking her with his fists, according to the account, and to choking her when she tried to “steal something.” There were blood stains on Raney’s jeans.

When a detective showed Raney a picture of the woman’s injuries, according to the account, he cried, claiming that the oral sex was consensual and asking why she fought him, according to the Sheriff’s Office.

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