King County prosecutors charged a 34-year-old homeless man this week with first-degree rape with a deadly weapon, accusing him of sexually assaulting the 17-year-old daughter of a Federal Way couple who let him move into their apartment so he could get back on his feet.
Rene Maya Estrada was arrested Oct. 16 in the 31000 block of Pacific Highway South in Federal Way and remains jailed at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent in lieu of $500,000 bail, court and jail records show. Considered an extreme flight risk, prosecutors say he has been in Washington for eight months, appears to have been subject to immigration-removal proceedings in 2005, and had his Mexican passport with him at the time of his arrest. It also appears a warrant was issued for his arrest in Colorado on drug charges, according to the records.
“The defendant is essentially a stranger to the victim. He was homeless and her parents allowed him to stay in their apartment in order to help him get on his feet,” Senior Deputy Prosecutor Celia Lee wrote in charging papers.
The charges say only that the girl’s parents met Maya Estrada through “a previous employer,” and let him move into their apartment Oct. 10.
Two days later, “the defendant waited for the victim to arrive home from work, grabbed her and forced her into her bedroom at knifepoint, where he removed her clothing and raped her. He told her he would kill her if she did not comply with his demands,” Lee wrote. “When she resisted, he punched her. He then moved her, at knifepoint, to the laundry room, where he raped her again.”
According to the charges:
Just before 8 p.m. Oct. 12, Federal Way police responded to an apartment complex after a man called 911 to report a sexual assault. Officers arrived and met the 17-year-old girl, who one officer noted was wearing only a T-shirt, shorts and socks. She told officers a man, whose name she didn’t know, had moved in with her and her parents two days earlier.
The girl arrived home from work around 7:30 p.m. and was talking on her cellphone as she went into her bedroom. When she ended the call, the man grabbed her, covered her mouth with one hand while pressing a knife into her side with the other, she told police.
The man pinned her to the bed, removed her clothes and raped her, the charges say. When the girl heard noises outside the apartment, she told the man it was her family returning home, and he ordered her to get dressed. Still armed with the knife, the man pushed the girl out of her apartment and forced her into the building’s shared laundry room on the ground floor, where he raped her again, the charges say.
When a car parked outside the laundry room, the girl told the man the car’s occupants were her cousins. He released her and tried to get her to return upstairs to her apartment, but the girl walked to the car instead and pretended to get into the vehicle until the man was out of sight. She then ran to a woman in the parking lot for help and the woman brought the girl into her apartment to call 911.
Police obtained a warrant to search the girl’s apartment and found documents with Maya Estrada’s name on them, the charges say. Officers searched the area for Maya Estrada but did not find him.
On Oct. 16, the girl arrived at her workplace around 4 p.m. and saw the man who had raped her inside, according to charging papers. As she called 911, the man approached her, said he felt bad and wanted to talk to her father. He then left.
Police arrested the man in an alley about four blocks away. The girl was brought to the scene and confirmed he was the same man who had attacked her four days earlier, the charges say.
A spokeswoman in the Seattle field office of U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) was researching Maya Estrada’s background Wednesday but was unable to immediately say whether he has previously been deported.