Man accused of raping escorts

Deputies say man beat, raped 7 women who worked for escort services

HOUSTON - A man suspected of raping and threatening to kill women has been arrested and charged.

Charles Eric Devenport, 25, has been charged with aggravated sexual assault.

Harris County sheriff's deputies said Devenport beat and raped seven women who worked for escort services.

Detectives said the attacks happened at abandoned apartments in the 900 and 1000 blocks of Cypress Station and 100 and 200 blocks of Hollow Tree from September 2011 through February 2013.

A teenager who told detectives where to find Devenport said she had seen the artist composites. Investigators said they tracked Devenport through telephone records.

"We traced that phone record to his dad, and his dad said, 'He does use my phone,'" Lt. Rueben Diaz said.

Deputies said they staked out Devenport's neighborhood on Tuesday. They caught him as he tried to escape through a back door of a home.

"The suspect is not being very cooperative," Diaz said. "He owns up to contact with the escort services but denies any sort of sexual attack."

Devenport was staying with his cousin, Aramita Thompson.

"We had no idea of what was going on whatsoever," said Thompson.

Thompson said she didn't know he was wanted until detectives knocked on the door.

"It was just like mind blowing," said Thompson. "I don't believe he would do something like this to somebody, especially 7 different women. I've never known him to do anything like this."

"He just doesn't seem like a person who is a rapist and I just pray to God that he'll fix everything," said Denise Cornejo, Devenport's aunt. "Like I said, we didn't know anything until today, and I pray for the ladies who were harmed and my hearts go out to their families 'cause no one deserves to be treated that way."

Detectives said Devenport targeted young, Hispanic women, seven of them who all worked for escort services. He allegedly lured those women to vacant apartments in the Cypress Station area and raped them, officials said.

Investigators identified Devenport with DNA found at the crime scenes.

"It's a combination of good police work, good tips and public trusting us to give us information," said Diaz.

Investigators are still looking for Devenport's accomplice, a woman who allegedly directed one of the victims to a vacant apartment where Devenport was waiting to rape her.

"That woman directed the victim to the paws of this predator," said Sheriff Adrian Garcia. "We need to find out who that woman is."

Devenport is being held in the Harris County Jail with bond set at $250,000. He's scheduled to appear in court on Thursday.

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