CHARLOTTE, N.C. - A 39-year-old man was charged Friday with raping a woman through an arrangement police say he made with her husband on Craigslist.
Rodney Liverman, of Norwood, faces several charges, including first-degree rape. Liverman is being held in Cabarrus jail under a $250,000 bond.
The victim's husband is also in jail. Police say he found Liverman on the classified advertisement Web site to have sex with his wife while he watched.
Kannapolis police said Saturday that e-mails they have retrieved make it clear that the alleged assailant knew the victim in this case wasn't a willing participant in some type of role-play fantasy.
"It is complicated because there is an allegation of role-play,” said Capt. Chuck Adams of the Kannapolis Police Department. “However, the information leading up to this encounter has made it clear to us that this individual should have known this was not going to be a role-play."
The arrest came nearly two weeks after the May 31 incident in Kannapolis. Police and the U.S. Secret Service had been searching for the assailant and used a confiscated computer and cellular phone to track down Liverman.
Early on May 31, investigators say, a man entered the victim's bedroom, where she and her husband were sleeping, and demanded money and sex while holding a knife to the woman. The couple's children were asleep in a nearby room.
The search warrant says that during the assault, the intruder put down his weapon and the wife “was able to get the knife and throw it off the opposite side of the bed near her husband,” but that her husband did nothing.
After the attack, according the search warrant, the husband told his wife not to call police and to take a shower.
The wife called 911 minutes later. She and an investigator went to a hospital so DNA evidence could be collected.
After a three-day investigation, the husband was arrested and charged with first-degree rape and several other crimes, even though he did not physically take part in the assault, according to police.
He has a previous arrest for indecent exposure in Virginia. According to a police report on that case, he twice dropped a towel in front of a woman delivering a pizza to his Chesterfield County, Va., hotel room.
The Observer doesn't identify the victims of sexual assaults, and hasn't named the husband to protect his wife's identity.
The arrest is not Liverman's first in North Carolina, according to a criminal records search conducted by the Observer.
In 1994, he was sentenced to 10 days in jail after being found guilty of assaulting a female.
He lived in Norwood, a small town about 50 miles southeast of Kannapolis.
Julia Lee, a neighbor, said she knew Liverman, but only in passing. She said he had several children – she didn't know how many – and that he was a friendly neighbor, "a good fellow."
Click to view image: 'Rodney Liverman'
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