Angry citizens in Detroit beat a man because they were frustrated by police response to the rape of a teenager with Down Syndrome.
Angered by the slow speed of a rape investigation that has yet to yield an arrest, residents of a Detroit community apparently beat a man identified by neighbors as a suspect.
They said the man lured a 15-year-old girl with Down Syndrome into his Hubbard Farms apartment and raped her on July 17. Hubbard Farms residents say the man has mental health issues and is a threat, according to reporting by Detroit TV station WXYZ.
Police said the man was detained and questioned on July 29, but charges have not been filed as they continue to gather evidence, MLive reported.
But a friend of the victim told WXYZ the girl had to wait at the hospital for seven hours for Detroit Police to administer a rape kit. She reportedly waited another five hours before police interviewed her about the assault. Her rape kit was not sent to the Michigan State Crime Lab for another 21 days, the friend said.
The Wayne County Prosecutor's Office told WXYZ it is waiting on more evidence from Detroit Police to determine if charges will be filed against the man. In turn, the Detroit Police said they need DNA evidence from the state crime lab. The Detroit Police Department's crime lab was shut down in 2008 after the discovery of more than 11,000 untested rape kits, MLive reported.
Concerned community members began posting fliers identifying the man last week. Those wound up on a Facebook group where members called for vigilante justice.
On Monday, a man claimed on the site that his friends had attacked and beaten the suspect. "A friend of mine caught him and beat his (sic) until the cops came and got him," he wrote, adding that they "banged" his legs and hands with bats.
Detroit Police Commissioner Rev. Jerome Warfield told MLive that police are aware of the assault. Detroit Police did not respond to MSN News. "We knew this guy was out there, we knew the community was upset and yet we couldn't protect him..."
Detroit, with deep money woes, has been struggling with policing issues. Detroit's crime rate is five times the national average. It takes Detroit Police an average of 58 minutes to respond to a call, Emergency Manager Kevyn Orr said in a report. The national average is 11 minutes.
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