Source: Intimidation arrest in DeCoatsworth rape case

May 29, 2013 11:42:16 AM PDT
Philadelphia Police have arrested a man for allegedly intimidating a victim in the rape case against former police officer Richard DeCoatsworth.

Sources tell Action News that on Tuesday a man names Manuel Maldonado pulled a gun on one of the women who was allegedly assaulted by DeCoatsworth, telling her not to testify.

The Philadelphia Police Special Victims Unit arrested Maldonado following the alleged incident.

27-year-old DeCoatsworth is accused of raping two women back on Thursday, May 18, 2013.

According to investigators, DeCoatsworth left a party with two females and took them to another location, where they allege that he produced a handgun and "forced the two females to engage in the use of narcotics and sexual acts."

A police spokeswoman said the two called police after he left, and neighbors say police took DeCoatsworth into custody early Saturday morning at his Port Richmond home on the 2700 block of Salmon Street.

According to court records, DeCoatsworth was arraigned Saturday night on charges including rape, involuntary deviate sexual intercourse, trafficking of persons, false imprisonment and aggravated assault. His bail was set at $60 million.

DeCoatsworth was hailed as a hero after he was shot in the face during a traffic stop in September 2007 but still managed to chase after his attacker, who was later sentenced to 36 to 72 years in prison.

It was an act of valor that got him an invitation from Vice President Joe Biden to attend the president's televised February 2009 address to Congress and a seat next to First Lady Michelle Obama.

He said at that time, he didn't know why he had been singled out, but being in the presence of the nation's leaders was an honor "that I will keep with me for the rest of my life."

DeCoatsworth retired from the department on disability in December 2011.

Residents around his Salmon Street home say they have had a number of incidents with him since he moved there.

"I think that since he got shot, he is not the same person," said one neighbor.

In February of last year, Action News reported how DeCoatsworth was charged with harassment and simple assault after getting into an argument with a neighbor.

His neighbors say they tried to stay clear of him.

"He was really scary to me, very intimidating, very threatening, and I don't get intimidated very often, but he really scared me," she said.

Reports say Police Commissioner Charles Ramsey said back in February of last year that he believed he had made a mistake in granting the former officer's request to go back to work too soon after he was shot.

"God bless him for still wanting to get out there and do police work, but did I act in his best interest? In hindsight, I would say probably not," Ramsey said.

Authorities declined to give the locations of the party or the alleged crime scene.

Action News has learned that DeCoatsworth is being charged with attacking a third woman, his ex girlfriend, who investigators say he choked and punched in the face a week before the alleged rapes.

DeCoatsworth is due back in court in June.


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