A North Dakota man pleaded guilty in Snohomish County Superior Court on Monday to the 1999 rape of the teen in a southeast Everett neighborhood.
For years, the cold case simply was known as State of Washington vs. Individual A.
Police and prosecutors had the genetic profile of a suspect but they needed a name to go with the DNA.
That changed about a year ago. A genetic match was made between evidence preserved from the 1999 sexual assault and an inmate serving time in a North Dakota prison for sex crimes, according to court papers.
In a soft, barely audible voice, Daniel Nathan Peltier, 31, pleaded guilty Monday to charges of rape, robbery and assault while armed with a knife. His standard sentencing range is 25 to 31 years in prison. Prosecutors plan to ask for more than 30 years.
Sentencing was set for Aug. 27.
Over the years, Everett police investigators have stayed in contact with the victim. She now lives in Florida and was prepared to return to Washington to testify.
"She definitely supports the plea agreement," Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Andrew Alsdorf said after Monday's hearing. "She is very relieved she won't be having to testify."
Without knowing the name of their suspect, prosecutors filed charges against "Individual A" in 2007 to preserve their case within the statute of limitations.
Then a high school freshman, the victim was walking home from a bus stop late at night on Dec. 30, 1999, when she noticed a man on the other side of the street.
She told Everett detectives that the man crossed the road and appeared to be following her.
She took a shortcut through an alley and the man chased her, grabbed her by her coat and placed a steak knife to her throat, court papers said. He demanded money and she gave him a dollar bill.
The man then dragged her to the side of a building and raped her, according to court papers.
Peltier was sentenced to a long prison term in North Dakota after being convicted of having sexual contact with a girl who was either 10 or 11 at the time, according to court papers. He was sentenced for those crimes in February 2010.
Peltier's DNA profile turned up in a national database after he was imprisoned in North Dakota.
Eric Stevick: 425-339-3446; firstname.lastname@example.org.
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