Crime

Sex offender charged with 3 rapes in a day after he’s involved in hit-run, NC cops say

Tavio Whitehead was arrested for multiple crimes, including three rape charges.
Tavio Whitehead was arrested for multiple crimes, including three rape charges. Guilford County Jail

Police were searching for a hit-and-run suspect when they encountered a half-naked woman who led them to a North Carolina man now charged with multiple crimes, including committing three rapes in one day, the High Point Police Department said.

On June 5, officers were in pursuit of Tavio De’Shawn Whitehead after he was seen leaving a hit-and-run when the woman told them she had been sexually assaulted by the 21-year-old, the Winston-Salem Journal reported.

The victim had visible injuries and was taken to an area hospital, and police tracked down Whitehead and arrested him following a foot chase, according to WFMY.

Whitehead tried to get rid of a North Carolina driver’s license and several debit/credit cards in his possession and threw them onto an apartment roof, but they were retrieved and belonged to the woman who accused him of sexual assault, per WXII.

Police said Whitehead was connected to and charged with two other reported rapes that occurred in a 24-hour period, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

“He put his hands around my neck and choked me so tight, I could not breathe at all,” one of the sexual assault victims said in an interview with WGHP.

Whitehead was on probation for failing to register as a sex offender after he was convicted in 2016 of raping a 14-year-old high school student, the TV station reported.

The sexual assault happened at her school, High Point Central, per WFMY.

He served six months in jail before being released as part of a plea agreement, according to the Winston-Salem Journal.

The 6-foot-4 High Point man is listed on the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation Sex Offender Registry.

Whitehead is being held in the Guilford County Jail, where he has been charged with hit-and-run, resist/delay/obstruct, first-degree forcible sex offense, two counts of first-degree rape, three counts of kidnapping, attempted first-degree sex offense, second-degree rape and second-degree sex offense, records show.

His bond was set at $3 million on the combined charges, according to jail records.

Noah Feit is a Real Time reporter with The State focused on breaking news, public safety and trending news. The award-winning journalist has worked for multiple newspapers since starting his career in 1999.
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