Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Suburban Charleston, SC police officer allegedly stalks, rapes woman

A Hanahan, SC police detective who dated a woman briefly before allegedly raping her is being placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation.

Cassie Watson, 40, was charged with 1st degree criminal sexual conduct, kidnapping, and possession of a gun (alleged to be his service weapon) during a violent crime. The North Charleston native was being held on $250,000 bail at the Charleston County Detention Center, but bailed out Tuesday, August 19.

Watson met the victim 2 years ago on an online dating service, then called her until a year ago, when they went out on a date. The victim found Watson to be untrustworthy after he picked her up for dinner and a movie. "I didn't trust him from the get-go -He was possessive, controlling, and he was calling me names.” She brushed off all contact with him, and he obliged until a few weeks ago.

"I just kind of brushed it off, and I thought, 'OK, I don't ever have to see him again,' " she said. "He quit calling, and then, all of a sudden, two weeks ago, he popped up at my door."

The woman said Watson came to her home several times in recent weeks, and she became increasingly concerned.

On Sunday, Watson walked into her open front door and plopped himself down in a chair, she said. Watson pointed the gun in her face and, according to the affidavit, she thought that if she did not do what he ordered, she would end up in a "body bag." He forced her to disrobe and raped her, the affidavit said.

She called authorities about 10 minutes later, she said. She was taken to Medical University Hospital for an examination, a police report said. The 37-year-old was recovering at home Monday night and agreed to be interviewed if she could remain anonymous. The Post and Courier does not normally identify rape victims.

Bob Koon, Watson’s neighbor of 34 years, said that he didn’t believe he could do such a thing. . "I find it hard to believe. I've known him since he was 6 years old. He's a swell guy. I don't understand."

Watson worked for the Hanahan PD for 2 years, and previously worked for the South Carolina Department of Corrections.

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