Suspect answers to charges in 1999 rape of girl, 14

EVERETT — 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 in the rape of an Everett girl.

What they needed was a name to go with his DNA.

That changed about a year ago. A genetic match was made between evidence preserved from a 1999 Everett rape and an inmate serving time in a North Dakota prison for sex crimes, according to court papers.

On Wednesday, more than 12 years after the sexual attack in a southeast Everett neighborhood, Daniel Nathan Peltier, 31, appeared before a judge to answer to charges of rape, robbery and assault while armed with a knife. Peltier pleaded not guilty in Snohomish County Superior Court.

Bail was set at $1 million although he’s not going anywhere. His estimated release date from the North Dakota prison is 2034.

“That’s the wonderful thing about DNA,” Everett Police Lt. Robert Goetz said. “It has the potential of lasting a lifetime.”

The victim was 14 at the time of the attack. Over the years, investigators have stayed in contact with her. She now lives in Florida and is ready to return to Washington to testify, deputy prosecutor Andrew Alsdorf said.

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.

She told detectives she begged him to stop and he told her to shut up. He allegedly stabbed his knife into the dirt by her head. The assault occurred over about 20 minutes, the victim told police.

“They got her to a hospital very quickly and they were able to preserve the evidence that was needed,” Alsdorf said.

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;, stevick@heraldnet.com.

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