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DNA connects suspected Volusia serial rapist to 2 more cases, police say

Markeith Martin faces 2 additional sexual battery charges

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. – A Volusia County man suspected in a series of rapes in the area since 2010 was charged Thursday in connection with two additional sexual battery attacks, according to Daytona Beach police.

According to Daytona Beach and Holly Hill police, Markeith Martin, 44, is suspected in seven attacks from 2010 to 2018. Martin often made his victims call him "New York," according to the police reports.

Charges were filed Thursday in connection with rapes that occurred in Daytona Beach in July 2017 and July 2018.

On July 27, 2017, the victim said she met Martin and another woman at a 7-Eleven on South Ridgewood Avenue and went back with them to their hotel room where they smoked some marijuana, according to the police report.

When the other woman left the room, Martin took off his clothes and told the victim to do the same. When she said no, he stripped her clothes off and raped her, according to the report. When she attempted to leave, she said, Martin grabbed her by the throat and choked her.

Police said Martin later denied the allegations because he “never offers anyone marijuana.”

The victim told police she was able to leave when she told Martin she would go out and “mail him money.” She left and called police when she went home, according to the report. 

A rape kit was completed at Halifax Medical Hospital and evidence was sent to the FDLE lab. The FDLE completed a lab report in September 2017, and investigators said they found a match for Martin's DNA from another rape in August 2017.

In the July 2018 case, authorities said the victim was walking on Beach Street around 8 p.m. when Martin approached her, brandished a pocket knife and said, "If you leave my side, I'll kill you, (expletive)."

He dragged her into a wooded area, choked her, punched her and repeatedly raped her while forcing her to tell him that she loved him and threatening to kill her for screaming, according to the report.

After the assault, authorities said Martin forced the woman to a hotel room where he raped her again. She escaped to call 911 when he fell asleep, the report said.

Martin was in custody for another sexual battery case in which he was accused of raping a woman who's bicyclwhen investigators used DNA to link him to the July 2017 and July 2018 cases. Martin remains in the Volusia County Jail held without bail.