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Man Convicted In 2003 Sexual Assault

Rock Creek Park

National Park News

Joseph K. Berger, 41, originally of Danville, Virginia, was sentenced to 16 years in prison for first degree sexual abuse in superior court in Washington, DC, last Friday. He will also be required to register as a sex offender for life following his incarceration. In the early morning hours of July 4, 2003, a woman was sexually assaulted in the park near Adams Mill and Klingle Roads. She told Park Police officers that she was walking home when she was physically attacked, dragged into the woods, and sexually assaulted. Her assailant then fled with her purse. The woman was able to flag down a cab and make her way home, where she reported the assault to police. Officers canvassed the area but were unable to find the man despite a detailed description provided by the woman. Items of evidence with DNA on them were collected and provided to the FBI’s DNA laboratory in Quantico, Virginia. In May, 2004, the FBI isolated male DNA which positively matched Berger’s DNA. He was arrested shortly thereafter. On the eve of the trial, Berger pled guilty to first degree sexual abuse. The U.S. attorney praised the diligent and persistent work off USPP detective Michelle Ludwick, USPP mobile crime lab technicians Raul Matias and Shelley Hill, and the numerous USPP and Metro PD officers who assisted in investigating this case.


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