Man charged in rape held on $1 million bail

By Jeremy Schwartz
Peninsula Daily News

PORT ANGELES — A 35-year-old Port Angeles man accused of rape and multiple assault charges remained in the Clallam County jail on Sunday after he allegedly threatened a woman with a screwdriver before raping her on a dirt road off Black Diamond Road.

Justin Owen Sawby, also known as Justin Owen Rexford, was charged Friday with one count each of first-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping, second-degree assault with a deadly weapon with sexual motivation, second-degree assault-strangulation and harassment-threats to kill.

His arraignment is set for 9 a.m. Friday in Clallam County Superior Court. His bail was set at $1 million, according to documents filed in Clallam County Superior Court.

A Clallam County Sheriff's arrest report gave this account of the Wednesday night events that led to the charges:

Clallam County Sheriff's Deputy Brandon Stoppani spoke with Sawby's alleged victim, who is not identified, at Olympic Medical Center at about 8:49 p.m. Wednesday after she had reported a sexual assault.

The woman told Stoppani that Sawby, whom she had known previously, had persuaded her to drive him to Black Diamond Road to see his son.

The woman told deputies that once they had reached Peele Road off Black Diamond Road, Sawby pulled a screwdriver from the vehicle's glove box and threatened to kill her.

After jabbing at her with the screwdriver, he forced her to switch seats with him, drove farther up Black Diamond Road and took a dirt road until the vehicle became stuck in a creek.

“[The woman] said Sawby told her 'nothing matters; we are both going to die. I am going to kill us both,'” Stoppani wrote.

The woman said that Sawby strangled her until she almost lost consciousness before he let go, and — outside the truck — knocked her down and hit her in the face before tying her arms behind her back with a rope and trying to drag her along the road.

Stoppani wrote that he saw injuries on the woman consistent with her account.

The woman said that Sawby raped her and tried to again while they were walking back down Black Diamond Road but stopped his advances after the woman told him her head hurt from being hit.

After speaking with Sawby the next day, Stoppani wrote that Sawby said the woman insisted on having sexual relations and that she had threatened to kill herself with the screwdriver.

Sawby told Stoppani he had no knowledge of the woman's injuries or how she got them.



Reporter Jeremy Schwartz can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5074, or at jschwartz@peninsuladailynews.com.

Last modified: July 21. 2013 8:03PM
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