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Suspect faces charges in downtown Roanoke assault

Suspect faces charges in downtown Roanoke assault

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A Covington man is in custody and accused of sexually assaulting a woman who authorities said he encountered on a street in Roanoke.

Anthony William Texeira Jr., 32, is charged with attempted rape, aggravated sexual battery and other offenses in a Sept. 5 attack that was reported shortly after midnight in downtown.

The woman, who was able to get help after flagging down a passerby, said she was out walking that night when a man approached her asking for directions, said Roanoke assistant prosecutor Joshua Dietz.

She also didn’t know the area, Dietz said during a court hearing, as she was visiting from out of town for a wedding. She had returned to her rental house after the celebration but was on her way to meet up with others who were gathered at a downtown bar.

The two walked near Franklin Road in the same direction when the man pushed her into the shadows and assaulted her for several minutes, Dietz said. She tried to run but he chased her and pulled her into a port-a-john near the corner of Second Street, where the assault continued, Dietz added. Security camera footage that was played in court recorded the woman running in the street as a man pursued her.

The person who found her after the attack helped her get to the police station, Dietz said. Investigators sent to the scene found her shoes in the street, blood on a nearby vehicle and blood in the port-a-john.

The woman reported that her assailant took her phone. Investigators tracked its location to a part of Covington and canvassed the area with an image of the suspect taken from security video.

That led them to Texeira, Dietz said. He was arrested, and has been held in jail without bond.

Texeira hasn’t had a court hearing to respond to the allegations against him yet. He made his first court appearance Wednesday to petition a judge for bond.

He said he could arrange for a place to live and would submit to any conditions the court required. Both he and his attorney limited their comments to the bond request, and didn’t speak to the accusations outlined by prosecutors.

The prosecutor’s office, in opposing the bond motion, presented more information about what authorities believe happened that night and noted Texeira was on probation in an unrelated case in Alleghany County.

Deitz said Texeira should be considered a potential public danger and flight risk if released. Defense attorney Halley Taylor proposed the court impose stringent bond restrictions, and said Texeira had no prior history of probation violations or failing to report to court.

Roanoke Circuit Judge David Carson concluded Texeira didn’t qualify for bond and denied the request. His case has been set for trial in January.

Texeira is facing five charges: abduction with intent to defile, robbery with serious injury, forcible sodomy, aggravated sexual battery and attempted rape.

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