Rape suspect to make court appearance Thursday - FOX 13 News

Rape suspect to make court appearance Thursday

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CLEARWATER (FOX 13) -

Pinellas deputies have arrested a man investigators say raped a 17-year-old girl at a bus stop on Dec. 18.

Dustin M. Kennedy, 28, was arrested at the Largo Residential Re-Entry Center, a halfway house in Clearwater where he was under supervision by the Department of Corrections.

Investigators say they identified Kennedy through DNA.

The teenage girl was walking to school when the suspect walked up behind her, dragged her into a nearby ditch, choked and raped her, the Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said.

Kennedy admitted to the crimes, the sheriff's office said. Detectives also say he stole cell phones from the girl.

Detectives say Kennedy had prior convictions for burglary and grand theft in Hillsborough County.

Kennedy is now charged with sexual battery, attempted felony murder, strong-arm robbery and kidnapping.

He will make his first appearance in court Thursday.

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