SARASOTA -- The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office has a man in custody who fled to the Dominican Republic in 2012 after a woman reported to law enforcement that he had raped her multiple times as a child, resulting in her giving birth to his baby when she was 12 years old.
The victim came to investigators on April 25, 2012, to report that she was impregnated by Raul De La Rosa when she was 11, according to an arrest report. She was 20 years old and De La Rosa was 37 at the time she made the report.
She told investigators that De La Rosa started forcing her into sexual activity when she was 9 and stopped shortly after she gave birth to her son when she was 12. The sheriff's office did not release information on how the victim knew De La Rosa. She said he was the only one who could be the father of her child.
The Sarasota County Sheriff's Office had past records of the victim reporting sexual abuse when she was 10 and 12. Both times, the victim said she was molested but recanted, and one time she blamed on an uncle and another she blamed on two unknown men at a bus stop. In her 2012 testimony, the victim said De La Rosa had told her what to say in those interviews.
Investigators contacted the victim's mother, who lives in Miami, and she told them she called De La Rosa and told him about the baby. De La Rosa denied allegations and eventually changed his phone number and had not contacted her since, and she believed he had fled to the Dominican Republic.
Members of the SCSO Fugitive Apprehension Unit working with the U.S. Marshals Florida Regional Fugitive Task Force discovered De La Rosa had flown to the Dominican Republic on May 29, 2012, just a month after the victim's interview with investigators. At that time a provisional warrant was obtained through INTERPOL, beginning a long international legal process. De La Rosa was arrested July 30, and the extradition process began.
De La Rosa arrived in Tampa on Thursday night. and deputies transported him to the Sarasota County Jail, where he is being held on $200,000 bond.