Worcester Man Indicted in New Bedford Rape
An initiative to test previously untested rape kits in Bristol County has resulted in the first indictment for a cold case rape from 2010, the Bristol County District Attorney's Office announced Friday.
A Bristol County Grand Jury has indicted 47-year-old Worcester man Scot Trudeau on aggravated rape and assault and battery charges connected to the 2010 rape of a woman in New Bedford.
In March 2010, a 23-year-old woman walking along Coffin Avenue in the North End was attacked by two men, struck in the head and then dragged to a secluded area.
One of the men held her down while the other one allegedly raped her.
The victim reported the assault to police and was taken to St. Luke's Hospital for treatment, where evidence was collected in a rape kit.
But the kit sat without being fully tested by the state lab for 12 years — one of 1,148 such kits that have yet to be tested in Bristol County, according to the D.A.'s office.
Bristol District Attorney Thomas Quinn obtained a federal Sexual Assault Kit Initiative grant to start testing all of the cold case rape kits in 2019.
In February, the woman's kit was tested and the recovered DNA evidence allegedly matched a sample from Trudeau in the CODIS DNA database.
According to the D.A.'s office, if the rape kit had been fully tested in 2010, it would have pointed to Trudeau much sooner; his DNA sample was provided after a 2015 conviction for child sexual exploitation.
When she learned about the indictment, the victim "expressed shock about the rape kit never being tested," the office stated, adding that she also expressed appreciation to the D.A.'s office and relief that the suspect has been identified.
The office noted that the statute of limitations on this case was due to expire in 2025.
"I am extremely pleased that our rape kit testing initiative has already resulted in indictments against this defendant for a cold case violent sexual assault committed more than a decade ago in New Bedford," said Quinn.
"This case demonstrates the importance of fully testing all sexual assault kits. If we did not obtain the grant to have all these kits fully tested, this case never would have been solved and the statute of limitations would have expired."
“Victims who have been sexually assaulted have gone through a very traumatic experience and have a right to have these kits fully tested, especially when an assailant cannot be identified," he added.
Trudeau is currently on federal probation after serving a sentence on charges of trying to engage in illicit sexual conduct with a minor.
His dangerousness hearing is set for Tuesday.
The D.A.'s office revealed that it applied for the federal grant to fully test all of its untested rape kits following the 2013 conviction of John Loflin for the 2002 murder of Marlene Rose in New Bedford.
Loflin's DNA sample was provided to the CODIS database after he was arrested on unrelated charges in Tennessee in 2011, immediately matching with DNA evidence connected to Rose's murder.
He had previously been charged with a rape in New Bedford in 1997, but the case was eventually dismissed.
But the office later found that the rape kit from the 1997 case had never been fully tested by the state lab.
If it had, according to the D.A.'s office, the DNA evidence from Rose's murder would have immediately matched and Loflin would have been arrested.
The office stated that all 1,148 previously untested rape kits will likely be fully tested by the end of this year.
Quinn called the backlog of untested rape kits "totally unacceptable, especially for victims, the public and law enforcement who believed these kits were being fully tested."
"I am optimistic there are other cases that will be solved as a result of our rape kit initiative," he added.