Jacksonville man accused of pulling woman into wooded area, raping her

Police: When woman tried to scream, De'Shawn Davis threatened to kill her

By Erik Avanier - Reporter

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. - An 18-year-old man was arrested Monday after pulling a woman into a wooded area on the city's Northside, raping her and then robbing her, the Jacksonville Sheriff's Office said. 

De'Shawn Davis, of Jacksonville, is charged with sexual battery.

Police said it happened Monday morning on Harts Road, right off of Busch Drive near Interstate 95, and Davis was captured within an hour of the attack. 

It’s unclear if the woman was walking or jogging along a sidewalk, but she told police Davis pulled her into the wooded area where he raped and robbed her.

When the woman said she tried to scream for help, Davis threatened to kill her, according to an arrest report.

News4Jax crime and safety analyst Gil Smith said the attack was bold.

"That is somewhat unusual, but he may have picked a spot and waited for no traffic coming and saw her coming and then made his attack," Smith said. "Obviously, there was no one there to witness it because no one else called it in."

Less than hour after the assault, police said, Davis was located at an undisclosed location where he was positively identified as the attacker. 

"What's so outstanding is that this person was caught within an hour after the assault," Smith said. "That is somewhat unusual because, sometimes, people run and try to get out of the area. But when it comes to sexual assault, most people commit those crimes in areas where they are comfortable, not far from their own home."

In this case, Davis' address listed on the arrest report is only three minutes by car from the location where police said the attack occurred. Neighbors told News4Jax off-camera that they recognized Davis' photo and said he lived at the home with his father.

Davis was booked into the Duval County Jail and ordered held on $150,000 bond.

Smith said if anyone finds themselves in a similar the situation, the best thing to do is scream and fight back. He said making noise will alert people nearby, and the last thing an attacker wants is more people around to witness or intervene. 

The Women's Center of Jacksonville is available to help anyone who has been the victim of a sexual assault. The center's 24-hour Rape Crisis Hotline is 904-721-7273 or go to womenscenterofjax.org for more information.

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