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Willapa Harbor Herald • Town Crier
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(360) 942-3466 • PO Box 706, Raymond, WA 98577

Freece pleads not guilty; trial set for January

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A Winlock man accused of raping a 61-year-old woman Nov. 9 pleaded not guilty in court Thursday and is scheduled to go to trial the week of Jan. 6.

Rupp W. Freece, 23, is being charged with first-degree burglary and third-degree rape after allegedly attacking a family friend at her apartment on the 200 block of Pine Tree Rd., east of Winlock.

The attack is said to have taken place over the span of an hour, according to statements from witnesses and the victim, after an intoxicated Freece asked to use the victim's phone and then refused to leave her apartment.

According to police reports, Freece eventually began hugging and fondling the victim, stating he loved her and wanted to marry her, and forced her into the bedroom where he held her down and sexually assaulted her.

The victim protested for what she said seemed like 30 minutes and kept telling Freece the attack was rape and he should stop, but the victim said she did not attempt to physically resist as Freece is much stronger than her.

After the attack, Freece reportedly walked over to a nearby friend's house and entered without knocking, declaring he was likely in trouble and had just had sex with the victim.

The friend was entertaining guests at the time and, after questioning Freece and learning a rape had occurred, went to check on the victim and called 911 while Freece was convinced to sit and watch a movie until law enforcement arrived.

Lewis County Sheriff's Deputies, as well as Toledo Police, arrived on scene and detained Freece without incident. After interviewing witnesses and the victim, Freece was arrested for rape and reportedly replied he wanted to die and wished law enforcement would shoot and kill him.

Freece is facing a maximum sentence of life in prison and may have little legal defense to ask for leniency, as he is already a registered sex offender due to a 2011 conviction for communicating with a minor for immoral purposes, has incurred recent arrests for domestic assault, interfering with domestic violence reporting, unlawful imprisonment, DUI, and has repeatedly violated his probation through the use of drugs and alcohol.

It has been communicated by his attorney Freece suffers from mental illness, but previous court appearances indicate he remains capable of standing trial.

His next court appearance is scheduled for Dec. 5 in Lewis County Superior Court.

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