A 26-year-old Stillwater man was charged today in Washington County District Court with kidnapping and two counts of criminal sexual conduct.
Jeremiah Daniel Johnson, 26, of Stillwater, faces felony charges of kidnapping and 3rd and 4th Degree Criminal Sexual Conduct that allegedly occurred on Sunday, July 5.
According to the criminal complaint:
Johnson found an 18-year-old woman, intoxicated, passed out and incapacitated, next to a telephone pole at the intersection of Edgerton and Case in St. Paul.
Witnesses told police that Johnson saw the woman passed out on the sidewalk, got out of his truck, picked her up, with her arms dangling “limp and lifeless” and carried her to his truck and drove off with her inside, according to the complaint.
Based on information from witnesses, including Johnson’s license plate number, detectives with the St. Paul and Stillwater police departments were led to Stillwater, where they found the woman in the common hallway of Johnson’s apartment complex in the 1500 block of Greeley Street.
When police arrived, the woman told police she did not did not know where she was and seemed “frightened and confused,” according to the complaint. The woman told police she was intoxicated on the Fourth of July, and the last thing she remembers is watching fireworks.
Johnson told police he “wanted to help” the woman because she had sprained her ankle, according to the complaint. Johnson said the woman walked over to his truck and he helped her get in.
Johnson said the woman was “drunk” and she began to vomit. He also told police that the woman couldn’t give him her address, so he took her to his apartment in Stillwater.
Initially, Johnson denied any sexual contact, but eventually told police he “tried to do a little something, but it didn’t work.” He also told police, “we did have sex, she is 18, and there is nothing illegal about that.”
A search of Johnson’s home found evidence of sexual activity, according to the complaint. A sexual assault examination at Lakeview Hospital also found evidence of sexual activity.
“Stranger rapes are by far the most difficult to prove in most circumstances,” Washington County Attorney Pete Orput said. “The St. Paul and Stillwater police, as well as the citizens who came forward to help in this case, are to be commended for their efforts in bringing this investigation to a successful close. Our office will do all in its power to bring justice to the victim.”
Johnson’s initial appearance was today in Washington County District Court where bail was set at $400,000 unconditional and $100,000 with conditions.
His next court appearance will be at 1 p.m. on July 15.
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