Opening statements took place Wednesday morning in the trial of an accused serial rapist. Richard Dorsey, 46, faces a slew of charges- including attempted murder and sexual assault- from crimes that Anchorage police say took place between 2001 and 2004. Prosecutors described him as a criminal with a pattern, pointing to alleged sexual assaults and attempted sexual assaults of five different women, all who were working as prostitutes at the time.
"All five women will tell you a story that is so similar and so unique to Mr. Dorsey that it's eerie," said prosecutor Brittany Dunlop, who added in court that none of the victims knew each other.
Police say Dorsey picked up his alleged victims in his truck and raped them while holding a knife to their throat. One of the women told police she was raped two separate times by Dorsey but did not recognize him as her attacker until he reached in the glove compartment of his truck to pull out a knife. Dorsey is accused of attempted murder after one woman fought back and was injured by the knife during the struggle, according to police.
Though the alleged assaults happened between 2001 and 2004, it wasn't until 2009 when DNA evidence linked Dorsey to the string of rapes. He was in court for a separate sexual assault case, charged with reaching up a woman's skirt in 2006, when APD Sgt. Kenneth McCoy swiped a styrofoam cup Dorsey had drank from. McCoy ran Dorsey's DNA, which he says linked Dorsey to the unresolved cases. McCoy was the first witness in the trial.
While the state claims Dorsey followed a criminal pattern, the defense argues that police wanted to pin the crimes on him.
"You'll hear lots of things that the police did to try and associate Richard with all these patterns," said defense attorney Paul Maslakowski, as he addressed the jury. "I want you to sit here as you promised with an open mind and listen and think about what they don't tell you."
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