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DNA breaks decade-old rape case

By Heather Hintze 5:34 PM May 23, 2014
ANCHORAGE –

Ten years after a woman reported being raped to police, two of her alleged assailants are now charged with the crime.

On Tuesday, police arrested 31-year old Orlin Sutliff, and 29-year old Antwon Archilbale for sexual assault.

Police said it happened on Nov. 8, 2003. A woman had been drinking with her sister and some friends at Chilkoot Charlie’s. She was unable to find her sister when the bar closed.

A group of men offered to give her a ride home. Court documents show they took her to a Mountain View apartment where as many as eight men “masturbated on her, forced her to give them oral sex or to masturbate them and had intercourse with her, despite her struggling against it.”

They then dropped her off at a shopping center parking lot. She reported the crime to police, but was unable to tell officers where the apartment was or identify any of the men.

In 2012, Orlin Sutliff was convicted of felony criminal mischief and had to provide a DNA sample. That matched the two samples taken from the woman’s rape kit in 2003.

“The person who is the victim in this case feels extremely elated. She was extremely surprised to get a call from me eight and a half years after the incident,” said Anchorage Police Department Special Victim’s Unit Detective Brett Sarber. “It’s also brought up a lot of emotions and things that transpired back then that she has to relive through.”

Sarber interviewed Sutliff about the night. Sutliff denied having any sexual contact with the victim, but did admit to dropping her off in a parking lot.

Archibale told Sarber he has “seen several men at the apartment engage in sexual acts with [victim] on that night, including Sutliff.” Archibale said he received oral sex from her, but it was consensual.

Documentation from the woman’s rape kit showed she had injuries consistent with being sexually assaulted. Police said this case is the perfect example of why victims should report their crime as soon as it happens.

“When we get a hit that allows us to reopen a case and work it to conclusion, it’s a great feeling for us,” said Lt. Kenneth McCoy. “What feels the best for us is being able to call the victim of the crime and let them know, although so many years have passed, we are still being able to make a case for you.”

Sutliff and Archilbale are scheduled for a pre-indictment hearing on May 29.

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