Two wanted in assault, robbery

Two men were being sought Friday in connection with a robbery and assault on a couple near downtown Raleigh earlier this week, police said.

Authorities said the two men mugged a 35-year-old woman and her male companion as they walked from a convenience store on New Bern Avenue early Tuesday. The woman was dragged behind some houses and raped. Investigators said Friday they think the suspects are in hiding.

"We are fairly certain that they've received information that they are suspects," said Sgt. Mike Alexander, who said tips from the public helped identify suspects in the assault.

The muggers attacked the couple with a plank of wood as they walked past the Richard B. Harrison Library at 1313 New Bern Ave. The woman's companion, a 25-year-old man, handed over his cash to the muggers. Then the robbers began to drag the woman away, telling her friend that they were armed with a handgun and threatened him with serious bodily harm if he interfered, police said.

The two assailants took the woman a couple of blocks to the rear of several homes on Maple Street, where they each raped her, police said. The woman's companion ran to a nearby pay phone to call police.

Patrol officers found the woman a few minutes later, but the attackers had fled.

Police have obtained arrest warrants for Christopher W. McClam, 25, who usually lives with relatives at 126 N. Fisher St., two blocks from where the sexual assault occurred. Also wanted for arrest was Danny Chavis, 30, of no known address. McClam is 6 feet tall and 180 pounds. Chavis stands 5 feet 9 inches and 210 pounds.

Both McClam and Chavis are well-known to patrol and vice officers, and each has an extensive arrest record, Alexander said.

State court records show McClam has been found guilty on charges of burglary and hit-and-run. He was also found guilty of larceny in November. Chavis was found guilty on several cocaine charges dating back to 1987.

Police ask that anyone with information about McClam and Chavis call Crimestoppers at 834-HELP.