Victim’s Voice: Denham Springs rape victim living in fear after brutal attack

Police say the suspect in the case has now been linked to a second rape and home invasion in Denham Springs. The victim recalls that the suspect “continued beating her, shoved pills down her mouth and doused her with gasoline”.

The victim of a reported rape in Denham Springs last December is speaking out about the incident for the first time.

It comes as investigators linked the suspect in her case to another rape and home invasion that happened two months earlier, Denham Springs Police announced Wednesday. 

Unfiltered with Kiran is protecting the victim’s identity, but we spoke with her about what happened the night she says she was beaten, raped and tortured in the woods near Hwy. 190 and Pete’s Hwy. 

The victim says she was walking home from a nearby store and was minutes from her driveway when a hooded man surprised her from behind.

“He completely came out of nowhere,” the victim said. “I pause at the start of the bridge, and I put my phone light up to show cars I’m coming. I take one step and out of nowhere, someone comes up and puts both of their arms around my neck.”

The victim says she was carrying a knife, but the man knocked it out of her hand. 

“He was beating me with something hard, and I assumed it was my knife but closed,” she recalls. “He brought me to the water, and he was beating me. He then stuck my head under water and was beating me trying to get me to be quiet. It was abundantly clear he was trying to drag me off as soon as possible.”

The victim says that as she was attacked, she remembers screaming as loud as she could. She knew she was close to her home, and she hoped someone would hear her. 

“I couldn’t see anything because my glasses came off,” the victim said. “My hair was clumped in this giant matted ball of mud over my face. I could only see out of my left eye, but barely. So, all I could see was this figure coming at me and dragging me. My legs were skint from being dragged.”

“Signs of a struggle”

She says it took three hours before police and her family began to piece together what had happened. She says when her family looked at her location on the Life 360 app, they noticed her phone was at a creek. When they went to check it out, they saw police there already searching.

“They found my phone, my glasses, my shoes and my sweatshirt in the creek covered in blood and hair,” she said. “Then they saw the drag marks and were like, ‘Oh, she must have been taken, here’s signs of a struggle.’ That’s when they brought the dogs out and began looking for me.”

The victim recalls being put on a blanket, something that she thought was odd being in the middle of the woods. She says the man continued beating her, shoved pills down her mouth and doused her with gasoline.

She says the man continued beating her, shoved pills down her mouth and doused her with gasoline.

This went on, she recalls, for several hours. The victim also says she was raped.

She believes the man may have lived in the woods.

“This person knew these woods. He knew where we were going. He knew where we were.”

She remembers trying to convince the man to let her go, assuring him she did not see his face. But she says the man only continued threatening her. 

“At one point when we were in the woods, I was looking around thinking that I was going crazy because I  kept seeing these lights,” she recalled. “I thought they were porch lights swaying in the trees. But they were out there with flashlights and dogs, and I saw them in the distance looking for me.”

Eventually, she says the man continued moving her through the woods and they eventually got close to someone’s backyard. She recalls the woman at the house yelling from a distance for them to “get out of there”.

She says that the man began moving her until they reached Pete’s Hwy. She says that’s when she realized the man was letting her go, and she says she started running. 

“I ran to the nearest house, and I just started banging on the door. No one was answering.” 

She eventually made it to a house where she was able to call 9-1-1. She says she had several injuries including a broken jaw. 

The beating and rape has haunted her for several weeks now. 

“I was afraid to open the door to my house because he described where I lived,” she recalled through tears. “I was scared that he was out there just watching me.”

Denham Springs rape victim

Police name a suspect

Denham Springs Police have made an arrest in connection with the December 9th rape. 

Devin Brazile was arrested on December 26, charged with attempted 2nd degree murder, 2nd degree kidnapping, 1st degree rape and 2nd degree battery. 

Source: Denham Springs Police Dept.

Police say DNA collected as part of the investigation linked Brazile to the incident. 

Brazile is now facing additional charges in connection to a different rape investigation from October. In that case, he has been charged with home invasion, first degree rape and simple criminal damage to property. 

Read More: Denham Springs makes arrest in rape case

Denham Springs police say the DNA collected from the October incident matched the DNA from the rape in December. 

Brazile is being held in the Livingston Parish Detention Center. 

The victim says she did not know the suspect. She told UWK that she’s speaking out because of harassment she received on Facebook, where people questioned her story and what happened to her. 

“This wasn’t a story of someone meeting up with somebody, you know, and it went sour. I was really just walking home from the store and was grabbed from the bridge.”

“I’ve been made out to be this disgusting person. People told me I’m on drugs, that I had sex with him and regretted and was embarrassed. It’s been turned into something it’s not. And it hurts my feelings because I’m not that person.”  

About Daniel Brown 17 Articles
Daniel Brown is an award-winning journalist from Livingston Parish. Daniel began his career in Baton Rouge before working at television stations in Cleveland, Atlanta, Charlotte and Beaumont. As a newsroom editorial leader, Daniel has helped lead stations to regional Emmy awards as well as Edward R. Murrow awards for distinguished journalism. He is a proud graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University.

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