Former Red Deer man charged in 1998 sex assault

Police have charged a transient former Red Deer resident with sex assault 14 years after an 18-year-old local woman was violently assaulted near the 67th Street cemetery.

Police have charged a transient former Red Deer resident with sex assault 14 years after an 18-year-old local woman was violently assaulted near the 67th Street cemetery.

Early on July 25, 1998, a male suspect aggressively forced himself on a young woman in a park near the cemetery in Red Deer. City RCMP investigators found DNA evidence at the time but no matches were identified.

In June 2010, a match turned up through the police DNA data bank.

An investigation led to charges being laid in 2011, when an arrest warrant was also issued for the accused, who was a transient with no fixed address.

The accused was arrested by police in Nova Scotia this month and was transported from Halifax to Red Deer to face charges.

Lawrence MacPherson, 36, is charged with sexual assault, forcible confinement and uttering threats.

He will remain in RCMP custody, making his first appearance today in Red Deer provincial court.