Anchorage police say a 25-year-old Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson soldier has been charged in two gunpoint sexual assaults this summer, as well as a third attempted rape.
According to APD spokesperson Jennifer Castro, Spc. Tony Earl Bullock Jr. faces five counts of first-degree sexual assault and one count of attempted sexual assault. He also stands charged of two counts of third-degree assault and one count of fourth-degree assault.
Castro says the string of assaults began in Mountain View, during the early hours of July 16 at about 4:20 a.m.
“During this event, a young (Alaska) Native female was abducted off the streets in Mt. View at gunpoint and forced to a secluded area in an alleyway,” Castro wrote. “Here the suspect forced multiple sex events upon the victim. The victim immediately reported the event to APD.”
According to APD, Bullock’s next victim was attacked only a day later.
“The next event was an abduction at gunpoint on July 17, 2013 at approximately 6:30 p.m. on Bragaw Street, where a young female adult with similar features to the first victim was removed to a secluded area behind a nearby building,” Castro wrote. “The suspect forced multiple similar sex events upon this victim, and he also left evidence at the scene. Analysis of this evidence is ongoing.”
Castro says that details from both of the assaulted women yielded similar composite sketches of a suspect, which led APD to suspect Bullock when he was stopped trailing another woman on foot in Mountain View at about 3 a.m. July 20.
“Based on the context of this contact and previous case facts, Bullock became a person of interest in these cases, as it appeared that another sexual assault had just been narrowly averted as this event matched similar events in the first two cases,” Castro wrote.
Police received a fourth report at about 4:30 a.m. Aug. 11 from a Native woman, who said a black man had just attempted to rape her.
“She provided a vehicle license plate number that the suspect drove away in, and this vehicle was found to belong to Bullock,” Castro wrote. “Bullock was contacted and denied assaulting and/or any sexual events with this female but did admit to meeting her on the streets of Mt. View.”
As police developed evidence from the first two cases, however, details in those cases pointed to Bullock and led to searches on his property Wednesday.
“APD served multiple search warrants on locations that Bullock used as residences, including his barracks room on Fort Richardson, and recovered more evidence,” Castro wrote. “Thanks to U.S. Army Command support, the public was not in danger once Bullock was identified and confirmed to be involved in the cases.”
U.S. Army Alaska spokesperson Lt. Col. Alan Brown confirms Bullock’s rank, and says he is assigned to JBER’s 2nd Engineer Brigade.
“We are aware of the charges from APD,” Brown said. “We are currently cooperating completely in the investigation.”
Brown says that while Army officials are concerned by the charges against Bullock, APD is the lead agency in the investigation. He notes that the Army has been working diligently to combat sexual assaults.
"The Army as a whole and specifically U.S. Army Alaska is doing a number of different efforts to prevent sexual assault in the ranks, change our culture to where that behavior is not tolerated," Brown said. "That is an ongoing process, and that's coming down from the highest levels of the Army."
Castro says tips from the public, as well as the victims’ rapid reporting of the crimes, contributed to Bullock’s arrest in the case.
“APD would also like to stress the importance of reporting sexual assaults immediately to police,” Castro wrote. “In all three of these cases, the victims immediately called police and APD was able to recover significant evidence at the scenes.”
Police say Bullock apparently targeted women with similar appearances who were in vulnerable circumstances.
Police are trying to determine whether Bullock may have had additional victims.
"This is all we've been able to ID so far," Castro said. "So if there are any other victims, we're begging them to contact us and share your story."
Bullock is expected to be arraigned at the Anchorage Jail Wednesday afternoon.
Channel 2's Maria Downey contributed information to this story.
Contact Chris Klint