Lionel Jarvon Wells, 43, was arrested on July 26, 2021 for a series of rapes against five teenage girls in Detroit, Michigan.
The first assault took place on January 29, 2007 at 7:30 pm. An unknown male approached a 13-year-old girl who was walking to school and asked her for the time. When she walked away from him, he pushed an object into her back and forced her into the garage of an empty home and he sexually assaulted her.
The second attack took place on February 7, 2007 at 9:00 pm when a 17-year-old girl was approached by the same man who also asked her for the time, and then forced an object into her back and kidnapped her to a nearby abandoned home where he sexually assaulted her.
The third attack took place on December 15, 2008 at 6:30 pm when a 17-year-old girl was approached while walking down the street by the same man. The man asked her for her phone number, and when she walked away, he pushed an object into her back and then kidnapped her and forced her behind an abandoned shed where he sexually assaulted her.
The fourth attack occurred on March 3, 2011 at 9:30 pm when a 19-year-old girl was approached by a man who pressed an object into her back and forced her to a nearby home where he sexually assaulted her.
The fifth assault took place on October 24, 2014 at 10:15 pm when the same man approached a 17-year-old girl and asked her for her phone number. He then threatened her with a hand gun, pointed the gun at her head, and forced her into a field behind a post office where he sexually assaulted and robbed her.
His victims were threatened with what they believed was a firearm, and (in all but the first case) told to close their eyes and count to 100 while he fled the crime scene. He also robbed them of their purses and personal items.
DNA profiles for a single suspect were obtained from the victims’ Sexual Assault Kits. The cases were linked together through the CODIS forensic index, but there were no hits to a suspect.
The FGG investigation was conducted by Parabon Nanolabs in partnership with the Detroit Police Department, beginning in 2019. The final confirmation was made when police obtained a warrant to obtain DNA samples from Wells for comparison with that found at the crime scenes.
After pleading guilty to the offences, Wells was sentenced in Wayne County Court Criminal Division on September 14, 2022 to 25 to 50 years on charges of rape, kidnapping, and armed robbery.
Ainsworth, Amber. “Detroit Serial Rapist Sentenced to Prison After DNA Matches Rape Kits Dating Back to 2007.” FOX 2 News Detroit, September 14, 2022. Accessed April 29, 2023. https://www.fox2detroit.com/news/detroit-serial-rapist-sentenced-to-prison-after-dna-matches-rape-kits-dating-back-to-2007.
Clarke, Kayla. “Serial Rapist Sentenced After Pleading Guilty to Sexually Assaulting 5 Young Women in Detroit.” Click on Detroit, September 14, 2022. Accessed April 29, 2023. https://www.clickondetroit.com/news/local/2022/09/14/serial-rapist-sentenced-after-pleading-guilty-to-sexually-assaulting-5-young-women-in-detroit/.
Lofton, Justine. “‘Serial Rapist’ Who Assaulted 5 Teen Girls, Told Them to Count to 100 Sentenced to 25-50 Years.” MLive.com, September 14, 2022. Accessed April 29, 2023. https://www.mlive.com/news/2022/09/serial-rapist-who-assaulted-5-teen-girls-told-them-to-count-to-100-sentenced-to-25-50-years.html.