Rape Suspect Sketch Look-alike Repeatedly Questioned - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

07/14/05

Rape Suspect Sketch Look-alike Repeatedly Questioned

Anthony Kirkland Anthony Kirkland

The sketch of the serial rapist suspect became known throughout our entire area. One man who bears a resemblance to the sketch says people have been trying to turn him in to police for months.

Anthony Kirkland is 40 years old with two children, but he has been confused with this sketch the of the suspect. People say he fits the description perfectly.

He doesn't agree. "No I don't, I really don't," he said.

The first time police came to question him, he was walking home from a corner store. "They got a call from 911 saying there's a rapist in the area, and fitting my description and what I was wearing," he told us.

He was frisked and questioned, and DNA samples were taken from his mouth at the scene. The same thing happened just about a month later, again walking to a corner store.

"I was being embarrassed by the situation," he told us.

All the stares from strangers and run-ins with police really bothered Anthony. "Until this day, I'm still hurting and I'm still depressed from this situation."

But police say, unfortunately, that's the nature of investigations. With this case, they interviewed almost 250 people.

"It's all part of this investigation," said Capt. Bob Merriman with Savannah-Chatham police. "I would say most of the people were happy we talked to them and cleared them of any such thing."

Anthony isn't one of those, but he is happy the accused serial rapist is finally behind bars.

"What would have made me more happy is if I was the one who caught him," he said. "He's a part of my life being messed up and terrorized today."

Anthony says he does have closure on the situation now, but he wants people to know that he is his own person and he would never do anything like this.

Reported by: Kim Angelastro, kangelastro@wtoc.com

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