Man pleads guilty to sexual battery of New College student in 1994

Cold Case Solved with DNA Evidence

SARASOTA, Fla. (WWSB) - Thanks to DNA evidence, a man who sexually assaulted a New College student in 1994 is going to jail for the next 25 years.

Darryl King, Jr. 42, of Sarasota pleaded guilty Tuesday to sexual battery with a deadly weapon. In addition to his jail sentence, he was given lifetime sex offender probation.

Around 7am on April 16, 1994, police were called to the apartment of a New College student on the 5200 block of North Tamiami Trail. The victim told police she had been asleep when a man had gotten in through the unlocked sliding door, held a knife to her throat and sexually battered her before robbing her of $25 at knifepoint.

The victim did not know the man and was unable to fight him off.

Evidence was collected in 1994, including DNA, but there was no match at the time. But in November 2016, thanks to advances in DNA technology, FDLE was able to perform a familial DNA search. In December 2018, King was identified as the suspect and arrested by detectives on January 2, 2019.

“This case is an example of the commitment and professionalism of the detectives and crime scene technicians at the Sarasota Police Department, both past and present,” said retired Sarasota Police Detective Bo Potter, original case detective. “They have worked tirelessly to bring closure for the victim in this case since 1994. I am proud to have shared in the efforts of the men and women of the Sarasota Police Department over the last 26 years to provide closure to this victim.”

“In 1994, the victim received a life sentence with the trauma of being raped by this man,” said Assistant State Attorney Kennedy Legler. “Because of the hard work of the detectives of the Sarasota Police Department and the scientists at the FDLE, this conviction guarantees for the next 25 years he will remain locked up where he belongs."

King is currently being held in the Sarasota County Jail.

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