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Queens Chronicle

Felon indicted for two rapes in 1997

DA: New DNA testing leads to charges

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Posted: Thursday, January 30, 2014 10:30 am | Updated: 11:25 am, Thu Feb 6, 2014.

A 55-year-old incarcerated man has been indicted on charges of raping two women in separate attacks in Richmond Hill in 1997 after a DNA test hit linked him to the crimes.

Johnny Dupree, who is serving a sentence of 16 years to life in prison for a violent burglary in 2000, was arraigned last Friday on an indictment charging him with two counts of first-degree rape and two counts of first-degree sodomy. Dupree, who faces up to 25 years in prison if convicted, was ordered to return to court on April 7.

In reviewing the two cold case rapes, Queens District Attorney Richard Brown said, the DNA Prosecutions Unit had rape kit evidence and clothing retested using more sophisticated techniques that were not available at the time of the crimes. Brown said the two tests tied the rapes to Dupree.

According to the charges, at around 4 a.m., on July 11, 1997, Dupree entered a basement apartment on 129th Street in Richmond Hill where a 23-year-old woman was asleep with her three children. She awoke to allegedly find Dupree crouching in her bedroom. He allegedly grabbed her, placed a knife to her throat, and demanded cash. She gave him $20, after which he allegedly sodomized and raped her before fleeing. She immediately called 911 to report the attack and was taken to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where a rape kit was prepared.

In the second incident, Dupree is accused of breaking into an apartment on 130th Street in Richmond Hill at around 1 a.m. on Nov. 9, 1997. There, a 24-year-old woman was sleeping also. He is alleged to have displayed a knife and raped the victim before fleeing. That victim also was taken to Jamaica Hospital Medical Center, where a rape kit was prepared.

Brown’s cold case initiative, which began two years ago, has resulted in 13 John Doe indictments in 17 separate criminal incidents and the indictments of two named individuals, including Dupree.

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