Tips Help Police Arrest Truck Driver in Abduction, Rape of Woman in Erie
Police have arrested the man who they say is responsible for abducting and raping a woman last week in the City of Erie.
Jerome Keyes, 57, of Mississippi, faces charges including rape, kidnapping, terroristic threats, indecent assault, aggravated assault. He was arraigned Thursday evening and sent to the Erie County Prison on $250,000 bond.
Keyes was taken into custody around 3:30 p.m. Thursday near Butler by Erie Police, the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force and local law enforcement.
Investigators said he abducted a woman at knifepoint around 1:30 a.m. Oct. 17 as she was walking near 7th and Parade.
He then parked in an empty parking lot in 12th and Chestnut where he violently raped her for nearly an hour.
The victim was able to escape running without clothes on away from the truck.
She eventually pounded on the door of a home in the 500 block of W. 10 St., where a resident opened the door, helped her and called 9-1-1.
Erie Police put out surveillance video in hopes of identifying the truck and the man driving it.
Two callers identified what they thought was the trucking company, and a detective followed up with a company downstate to identify a possible driver who fit the description, according to police. Investigators later learned the driver was in fact in Erie at the time.
The victim identified Keyes as the attacker from a photo lineup, police said.
Erie Police Chief Dan Spizarny also praised the help of an neighbor, who helped the victim after the attack.
"To be woken up in the middle of the night to see at your door a naked person on your porch but to understand that person was in need of help and to call for help is tremendous," said Spizarny. "It speaks volumes about the person that helped."
The semi truck was brought back to Erie and towed to the city garage Thursday night to be processed for evidence.
Investigators said Keyes has been working for Wayne W. Sell Trucking Corporation, which is based out of Sarver, Pa.