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DNA is what linked sexual assault cases

April 13, 2005|by DON AINES

chambersburg@herald-mail.com

CHAMBERSBURG, Pa. - A DNA sample taken from a Hagerstown man suspected of abducting and sexually assaulting women in Maryland and Pennsylvania matched samples collected from the victims in three of the cases, according to an affidavit of probable cause filed Monday in Magisterial District Justice Gary Carter's Office.

Pov N. Srun, 34, of 838 W. Washington St., has been charged by Waynesboro, Pa., and Chambersburg police with multiple counts of rape, kidnapping, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse and other felonies and misdemeanors in a Sept. 16 sexual assault against a 16-year-old girl in Waynesboro and a Sept. 28 attack on a 20-year-old woman in Chambersburg.

"We got a sample of his DNA and it was linked to our cases," said Detective Scott Mummert of the Chambersburg Police Department. Tests of previously unidentified DNA collected from the victims had shown that the two cases in Franklin County were linked to a Jan. 25 sexual assault in Rockville, Md., Mummert said.

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Srun has been indicted in Montgomery County, Md., for the Jan. 25 assault and another on Feb. 21 in Bethesda, Md., according to the State's Attorney's Office in that county. Srun was arrested in Hagerstown on Feb. 21 after a witness in Bethesda gave police a description of a Honda Odyssey used by the attacker.

Montgomery County police provided police in Chambersburg with a sample of Srun's DNA on March 3, police said. On March 24, the Pennsylvania State Police Lab reported that Srun's DNA matched samples taken in the two Franklin County rapes.

In the Sept. 16 assault, the girl was getting into her vehicle in the Kmart parking lot at about 9:20 p.m. when a man forced his way in, the affidavit stated. He drove the girl a short distance, told her to give him her license and called her by name throughout the assault, police said.

Afterward, he drove her vehicle to Northeast Avenue near Kmart and fled, police said. The attacker covered his face with pieces of duct tape, police said.

The girl drove home and told her mother, who reported the assault, police said.

The assault in Chambersburg began in the parking lot of Weis Market at about 3:20 p.m. when a man wearing a black ski mask forced his way into the woman's vehicle. Once again, the man drove a short distance, got the woman's license and called her by name throughout the assault.

The man then drove the vehicle back to Weis Market and fled.

Along with DNA evidence, police found pieces of duct tape in both victims' vehicles. A baseball cap was found in the girl's vehicle in the Waynesboro case and the ski mask in the Chambersburg case.

Prior to the Jan. 25 and Feb. 21 assaults in Maryland, the affidavit stated that police in Montgomery County had investigated another similar assault on Nov. 29 in the parking lot of Toys "R" Us in Gaithersburg, Md. A man with duct tape on his face forced his way into the passenger's side of a woman's vehicle, according to the affidavit.

The man fled when she accelerated through the parking lot, police said.

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