For the second time, DNA testing has linked a former Kansas City man to a 1980s sexual assault.
Jackson County prosecutors announced Tuesday that they have charged Melvin L. Conley with the 1985 rape of a 14-year-old girl in Kansas City.
In 2002, DNA technology also linked Conley, now 56, to a Kansas City rape that occurred in 1986. Conley pleaded guilty to that crime in 2005 and was sentenced to 15 years in prison. When charged in that case in 2002, he already was serving a 30-year prison sentence for a 1987 sodomy conviction.
According to court documents released Tuesday, the girl in the 1985 case was walking home from a friend’s house in the Northeast area on July 5 when someone grabbed her around the neck from behind. When she struggled and screamed, the attacker punched her in the face and told her to be quiet or he would kill her.
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He dragged her behind a house, where he tore off her clothes and again punched her in the face when she continued to struggle. He forced her to walk to another location, where he raped her, according to court documents. After being raped a second time, the girl must have fallen asleep because she woke up and the assailant was gone, she later told police.
She suffered several fractures to the face and had to have her jaw wired shut. Police collected evidence that the Kansas City crime lab saved.
Later testing of the evidence showed it matched Conley’s DNA, according to court documents.
When Kansas City detectives went to a Missouri prison to interview Conley, he denied ever having sex with anyone outdoors in the area where the attack occurred.
He has been moved to the Jackson County jail, where he awaits a Thursday court hearing in the new case, according to court records.