Chesterfield man accused of sexually assaulting woman after meeting her online

Police believe there may be other victims
Police believe there may be other victims.
Published: Sep. 1, 2023 at 9:51 AM EDT|Updated: Sep. 1, 2023 at 6:59 PM EDT
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CHESTERFIELD, Va. (WWBT) - Police say a man is behind bars charged with raping and assaulting a woman he met on a dating app this summer, and detectives think there are more alleged victims out there.

Chesterfield police say 27-year-old Matthew Kirkland sexually assaulted a female, and they believe this isn’t the first time he’s attacked a woman.

“It’s definitely concerning that we may have further victims out there because the last thing we want is somebody suffering in silence,” Lt. Payne with Chesterfield Police Department said.

Chesterfield police said the Matoaca man has been charged with rape, attempted strangulation, and several other sexual offenses.

“The suspect met the victim on an online platform, and they met up and during that time that is when the crime happened,” Payne said.

Payne said that was in July of this year. We spoke with a woman named Robin, a former classmate of Kirkland’s who claims she had a disturbing encounter with him in high school in 2012.

“We had a band hallway in school. I would walk down it during lunch, he tried to kiss me in the band hallway and because I would not kiss him, because I was with my now husband at the time, he choked me in the hallway and he tried to put his hands down my pants,” Robin said. Robin said she reported it to her teacher but isn’t aware if anything came of it.

Though she believes the statute of limitations has passed, Robin called police this week to report the alleged incident.

That’s something Chesterfield Police want others to do. Even if charges can’t be filed, resources are available to help.

“I definitely want to encourage anybody that wants to come forward. We are here for you, we are here to help, and we will do everything in our power to not only proceed with any case that we have but to make sure you feel comfortable during the process,” Payne said.

“I hope that they see this and also think like me that these charges will stick hopefully, and they also will get the courage to come forward,” Robin said.

Kirkland is being held at the Chesterfield County Jail without bond.

If you have any information that could help in this case or know someone who may have been a victim, call Chesterfield Police at 804-748-1251.