BUCKHANNON – A Lewis County man who had been living in the Cheat Lake area of Monongalia County is being held without bond after allegedly kidnapping, beating and sexually assaulting a woman who was found bound up with duct tape and cords in the passenger-side of a truck in Upshur County Thursday.
William Earl Parker Jr., 53, was arrested for one felony count of kidnapping, a capital offense, and three felony counts of first-degree sexual assault after Upshur County Sheriff’s deputies located the female victim in the Tennerton area Thursday morning.
According to a press release, at about 7:30 a.m. Sept. 23, investigating officer Chief Deputy Mike Coffman received a call from the Upshur County E911 Communication Center indicating a woman had phoned in, saying she was being “held against her will” somewhere in Upshur County.
The female victim described her surroundings, enabling telecommunicators to pinpoint her location in a mobile home park in Tennerton by tracing her cellphone.
Coffman, Upshur County Sheriff Virgil Miller and three other deputies found the woman in the passenger-side of a black 1994 Mazda pickup truck “with her feet and hands bound with black duct tape and cords” on Poinsettia Drive in Tennerton, according to the release.
“The victim reported that she had been beaten with a baseball bat, had a knife held to her throat, and that she was forcibly taken by … William Earl Parker, Jr., against her will from the Cheat Lake area of Monongalia County, West Virginia in a vehicle operated by [Parker],” the release states. “The victim had multiple bruises all over her body and a laceration on her face which she sustained from the Defendant … The victim’s hands were taped tightly behind her back by the Defendant.”
The victim told law enforcement Parker had taken her against her will late Wednesday night or just after midnight Thursday morning and had allegedly bound her hands and feet, held a knife to her throat and sexually assaulted her three times in two locations, including in the Saul’s Run Road and Stone Coal Road areas, according to Coffman and the release.
On Friday morning, Coffman said the victim’s injuries were serious and she had been transported to St. Joseph’s Hospital and then later taken to J.W. Ruby Memorial Hospital in Morgantown.
The woman was reportedly able to contact police when Parker entered a mobile home briefly.
“He had gone into a trailer and left her in truck, and there were five of us, so we surrounded the trailer and were able to get him out and arrest him without incident,” Coffman said. “When we found her, she had significant injuries all over her body. She was covered head to toe with bruising, swelling and lacerations.”
The investigation is ongoing, but deputies believe the two lived in the same Cheat Lake campground, and although Parker knew the victim’s boyfriend, the victim and Parker were not acquainted personally.
“They knew each other but were not in any kind of relationship,” Coffman said.
Parker is being held without bond on the kidnapping charge, which carries a life sentence in prison, and on an $150,000 cash-only bond on the three first-degree sexual assault charges. Each count carries a penalty of not less than 15 nor more than 35 years in prison or a fine between $1,000 and $10,000 and 15-35 years in the state penitentiary.
In addition to Miller, Sgt. Rodney Rolenson, Sgt. Dewaine Linger and Deputy T.A. Menendez assisted on scene.