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Man beat and raped woman, officials say

In a suicide note, Richard Larson Jr. said he could not live with himself because of something "so terrible" he had done the night before.

What he had done, authorities said, was rape a 34-year-old woman repeatedly, threatening to "slice her throat" if she resisted and strangling her until she nearly lost consciousness.

Found sitting in a stolen truck in an open field off Fivay Road on Tuesday, Larson, 28, was arrested and later charged in connection with the early Monday attack. Larson of Hudson had not tried to hurt himself, but detectives found the suicide note in the truck with him.

He was held late Wednesday in the county jail in lieu of $61,000 bail.

The woman, who suffered bite marks and bruises, was treated at a local hospital. She was able to escape and run for help after Larson fell asleep, sheriff's spokesman Jon Powers said.

Richard Larson Sr., Lawson's father, said Wednesday he had not heard from his son in several days and had not known of his arrest.

He was not surprised by the allegations against his son.

"He'll call me once in a while when he needs something but, other than that, I don't hear from him much," he said.

"He's 28 and takes care of himself. I don't know what else to say."

About a year ago, an intoxicated Larson was arrested after he walked into traffic in Hudson, threatening to fight anyone who came near him. He fought with officers who tried to arrest him and had to be subdued with pepper spray and hogtied.

Larson later pleaded no contest to charges of resisting an officer with violence and disorderly conduct.

Sunday night, Larson offered to drive a woman home from Bobkatz Bar off U.S. 19 in Hudson. The woman had been waiting for her boyfriend, who had gone to the Buccaneers game that afternoon in Tampa, authorities said.

When her boyfriend did not return, she drove to another bar to look for him, Powers said. She returned to Bobkatz, where she had a few drinks and felt unable to drive herself home, he said. She knew Larson from the bar and he agreed to give her a ride, Powers said.

Instead of taking her to her home in Spring Hill, Larson drove her to a parking lot off U.S. 19 and told her his car had stalled, according to reports.

She offered to walk back to the bar and get her car. At that point, Larson attacked her, authorities said.

He grabbed her by the throat and strangled her, almost causing her to lose consciousness, police said. He forced her to perform oral sex on him, then ripped her clothes off and forced her to have sex with him, reports said.

He dragged her out of the truck, slammed her head into the hood several times and raped her again, reports said.

After the attack, Larson refused to allow the woman to put her clothes back on, Powers said. Once Larson fell asleep, the woman grabbed his shirt and walked about a mile to a store to call for help.

Powers said the woman suffers from some type of neurological disorder that affects her balance and coordination.

The condition made her less able to resist the attack, Powers said. He would not say what the disorder was.

Before the attack, Larson stole a truck from the stucco company where he worked, Powers said. The truck's owner reported it stolen and detectives found Larson sitting in the truck Tuesday afternoon.

Detectives investigating the rape knew the attacker's first name was Rich. A few hours after Larson's arrest on the grand theft auto charge, the woman picked him out of a photo lineup, Powers said.

Larson is charged with three counts of sexual battery, one count of false imprisonment and one count of grand theft auto.

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