Convicted Rapist Arrested for Attacking Same Victim
May. 25, 1991
MIRAMAR, Fla. (AP) _ A convicted rapist released early from prison returned to his victim's home and allegedly raped her again, police said.
Robert John Charette, 27, allegedly broke into the woman's home through a sliding glass door early Thursday, police Lt. Chuck Febro said.
When the woman woke up and turned on a light, she found him rummaging through her underwear drawer. After the October 1986 rape, he had taken five pairs of her underpants.
The woman woke up, turned on a bedroom light and saw Charette, who allegedly jumped on top of her, punched her in the face and raped her, police said.
In his haste to escape, Charette dropped his wallet on the woman's bed. Charette and the victim live within blocks of each other, and police tracked him down 20 minutes later at his home, police said.
The victim, a teacher in her late 30s, recognized Charette as her attacker and identified him. She had been told when he was released from prison on March 12, 1990, officials said.
Joanne Richter, director of the Sexual Assault Treatment Center in Fort Lauderdale, said a second rape by the same attacker sends a chilling message to other victims.
''We usually feel comfortable telling victims that (rapists) don't come back,'' Richter said. ''This certainly is unsettling.''
After Charette raped the woman in 1986, he was convicted of sexual battery, assault and burglary, receiving three concurrent seven-year terms.
He was placed in a sexual offenders program at South Florida State Hospital in Pembroke Pines from September 1987 to May 1989, and was then transferred to Lake Correctional Institution, a state prison.
He was released early by working in the prison system, officials said.
''Obviously the Miramar Police Department and the woman are very upset about this,'' Febro said. ''The system needs to be looked at. This guy needs help. Jail didn't help. He needs to have his behavior changed.''