AUGUSTA COUNTY, Va. (WHSV) - An Augusta County man was arrested this week for allegedly raping a woman he had offered to help with directions more than a year ago.
According to search warrants in Augusta County court, on April 18, 2019, a woman was driving through western Augusta County when she pulled her car over in a parking lot near Churchville.
Deputies say she was lost and was trying to find a WiFi signal on her tablet to pull up directions on how to get home.
At that point, a man who she didn’t know, in a white vehicle, stopped in the lot and asked if she needed help.
The sheriff’s office says in search warrants that the man told her to follow him, so she did, and then after driving a short distance, he pulled over on the side of the road, parked next to her car, and got into the passenger seat next to her, saying it was to explain directions.
According to court documents, at some point in their conversation, the woman says she passed out or fell asleep, and when she woke up the next morning, the man was gone.
She immediately noticed that her underwear was pulled down and the driver’s seat was adjusted all the way back.
At that point, the woman drove around looking for someone until she found the jail in Craigsville, where she spoke with a guard and was able to tell him she thought she had been raped.
The guard contacted the Augusta County Rescue Squad, who responded and took her to Augusta Health, where a sexual assault exam was documented and the kit sent off to the Virginia Department of Forensic Sciences Lab for analysis. The rape was officially reported on May 1.
Officials at the state lab developed a suspect identity through DNA comparison to the evidence collected, and eventually identified Timothy Kehrer as the man whose DNA was found.
According to court documents, deputies spoke with the victim earlier this month, and the warrant for Kehrer’s DNA was requested. On June 22, he was arrested and taken to Middle River Regional Jail, where he’s being held without bond.
Kehrer, a 43-year-old man from Raphine, is charged with raping a victim who is mentally incapacitated or helpless.
In Virginia, a charge of rape carries a minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum sentence of life.