Kirkland rape suspect found guilty in Arizona, now faces rape charge here

Dion Earl is a Kent man and former soccer team owner.

Dion Earl, the former owner of the Seattle Impact FC franchise, was found guilty last week of sexual assault charges against two women in Maricopa County Superior Court in Arizona.

The jury found him guilty on Aug. 22 and a sentencing is scheduled for Oct. 11, according to court documents.

Earl also faces rape charges in King County, related to a 2009 incident originating in Kirkland. Earl has been charged with rape in the second degree and is currently on bench warrant status, an official with the King County Prosecuting Attorney’s Office said.

According to charging documents:

Earl is accused of raping a woman who was employed at a massage parlor, in the 700 block of 8th Avenue. The woman used the studio a couple of times and practiced the art of Reiki, a Japanese massage technique.

The defendant allegedly visited the parlor, began to grab the woman, held the woman down and told her that he was a cop employed by the Seattle Police Department. He threatened that he would have arrested her if she reported the rape. But if she did what he said that he would give a “clean report.”

In November 2009, a sketch was completed and the woman provided Kirkland police detective Cristina Gilland with a bag of evidence from the scene including two towels used by the suspect and the washcloth the woman had used to wipe herself off. Also included were two pairs of ladies underwear. Semen was later detected on the underwear.

In February 2010, Gilland heard from the victim, who told the detective that she may have identified the man who raped her. After doing research on Google and talking to friends who played soccer, she was sure Earl was the person who assaulted her. The next day the woman came to the police department and positively identified Earl after being presented with a photographic montage of five similar looking males.

Police made contact with Earl, who refuted the rape allegations. He told police he visited the parlor was given a “hand job” and was extorted for money. He denied any wrongdoing and agreed to come to the police department for a computer voice stress analyzer examination.

Later that week the detective learned that Earl had obtained a lawyer and would not submit to an examination nor provide a sample of his DNA.

In September 2017, Kirkland detective Mark Brown was assigned to the case and met with the survivor. She requested the case be forwarded to the prosecutor’s office for review. Brown was also made aware that Earl had been arrested for rape by the Mesa Police Department (MPD) in Arizona. In December 2017, Brown received DNA from MPD, after filing a suspect DNA search warrant. The swabs were submitted to the crime lab for examination and comparison to previously submitted victim evidence. The DNA matched.

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