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Man accused of raping high school student in downtown St. Pete

ST. PETERSBURG — Authorities have arrested a man they say raped a high school student behind a downtown building last year.

William Johnson, 22, of Lutz, was booked into the Hillsborough County Jail on Monday night.

He was wanted by St. Petersburg police in connection with a Dec. 17 attack on an 18-year-old girl.

On that night, police said, the teenager, who lives in Pinellas County, got off a bus at Williams Park. She asked people at the park for directions to a Starbucks, and Johnson stepped up and said he would show her the way.

As they walked, police said, the two exchanged phone numbers.

But then Johnson grabbed the young woman and pressed a sharp object to her back, police spokesman Mike Puetz said.

Johnson forced her behind a building in the 600 block of Fourth Street N, where he raped her, police said.

The girl noticed a distinct tattoo on her attacker's arm, which helped police identify him.

Johnson works as a clerk at a Burger King in Lutz, records show. He was arrested on a charge of sexual battery. He was being held on $50,000 bail Tuesday.

Man accused of raping high school student in downtown St. Pete 02/26/13 [Last modified: Tuesday, February 26, 2013 6:07pm]
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