A Georgia man whose DNA has linked him to a series of unsolved rapes over several years was only arrested after joining the police academy.
Kenneth Bowen III had already been fired from the Clayton County Police Department for dishonesty and tardiness when investigators linked him to the rapes last month.
The 24-year-old former police recruit was arrested last Tuesday and has been charged with seven counts of rape and one count of sexual assault. He had been hired by the department on June 25, 2018 and fired on September 12, 2018 after arriving to training four hours late and not being truthful as to why.
In fact, Bowen was hired ten days after the Clayton County Police Department posted a “public safety notice” on its Facebook page warning citizens about a serial rapist which included a sketch of the suspect that strongly resembled the police recruit.
According to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Investigators started reviewing 911 calls reporting suspicious people near the area where the attacks took place.
Reimers said detectives reviewed the calls to see if officers had made contact with any of the suspicious people and then got names and birthdays of those people.
Bowen’s name and birthday was among those names related to a call from 2016, Reimers said. When investigators obtained a photo of Bowen, they saw a striking similarity between his visage and the GBI sketch of the suspected rapist, he said.
They then revisited the incident reports filed after the attacks to see if any of the details pointed to Bowen. Victims had told police the attacker had tattoos on his right arm and had left in a gray car with tinted windows. Police found that Bowen had a silver Ford Focus with tinted windows, Reimers said.
While trying to determine if Bowen had tattoos, investigators dug into his social media and found a photo of him with a family member who was dressed in a Clayton County police uniform. That detail, in turn, led investigators to the discovery that Bowen had also worked for the police department.
Investigators then obtained a subpoena to obtain a DNA sample from Bowen which matched the DNA from the unsolved rapes.
That family member, who was not identified in the article, is no longer with the department. Bowen is being held without bond.