by Max Brantley
A 40-year-old North Little Rock man, Dennis Earl Bradford (shown at left in booking photo), was arrested near his Indian Hills home today as a suspect in a 1990 child abudction and rape near Galveston, Texas. DNA evidence was critical in the investigation. The young girl, Jennifer Schuett (shown in a current photo) also gave a description of her attacker that produced a sketch (above right) remarkably similar to the suspect, who had cut her throat and left her in a field to die.
Schuett spoke at a news conference:
This event in my life was a tragic one,” Jennifer said during a press conference in Texas, “but today, 19 years later, I stand here and want you all to know that I am OK. I am not a victim, but instead, victorious.”
Here's the FBI account. (Link corrected.)
America's Most Wanted has covered the case extensively.
A North Little Rock police spokesman said the agency had never had cause to have contact with the suspect and he was unaware of any arrest record in Arkansas. His information apparently was incomplete, however.
The affidavit filed for the Texas arrest warrant, which includes detailed investigative work, mentions an arrest of Bradford in Hot Springs in 1996 for a strikingly similar crime. A woman was abudcted and raped and her throat was cut. He was convicted of the crime in 1997, the affidavit says. The state Correction Department said Bradford entered the system March 6, 1997 on a 12-year sentence for kidnapping in Garland County and was paroled Feb. 4, 2000. He completed his parole April 3, 2008. Bradford, who lived on Okmulgee according to the FBI, doesn't turn up on the state' map of sex offenders, but likely wouldn't. Prison records indicate he was sentenced only for kidnapping, not a sex-related crime.