Closure For Jennifer Schuett? Her Suspected Rapist Is Arrested 20 Years Later

October 14th, 2009

Jennifer SchuettIn 1990 a young girl named Jennifer Schuett was abducted from her bedroom in Dickinson, Texas. A man carried her to his car, sexually assaulted the 8-year-old child, slit her throat and left her to die in an overgrown field. The identity of the predator who committed these horrific crimes has remained a mystery, but now, nearly 20 years later, he may have finally been found.

The fact that Jennifer survived this ordeal is amazing, and her attempt to bring closure to the case is inspiring. Jennifer has been working with a division of the FBI called the Child Abduction Rapid Deployment Team (CARDT) to try and find the man who assaulted her so long ago.

Jennifer’s assailant left a few articles of clothing at the scene of the crime, but DNA testing was inconclusive at the time. There have been many technological advances since then, and members of the CARDT were able to run new tests on evidence that was locked away for many years. They found a match.

DNA samples pointed to a man named Dennis Earl Bradford. He was previously arrested for a sexual assault case in Arkansas from 1997, and found guilty of kidnapping a 35-year-old woman, sexually assaulting her and then cutting her throat. The crime was an exact match of what happened to Jennifer Schuett.

As investigators began to dig deeper, they made a startling discovery. After Jennifer was attacked she helped a sketch artist create a picture of the man who kidnapped her. That picture had a striking resemblance to Dennis Bradford’s driver’s license photo. Jennifer had also written several notes to the police about her assault – and those notes mentioned that her abductor referred to himself as Dennis.

Dennis Bradford lives in Arkansas, but in 1990 he lived in Dickinson, Texas. His home was only about a mile away from the apartment building where Jennifer was abducted. The FBI finally had a break in the case after nearly 2 decades of silence.

On Tuesday, October 13, 2009, Dennis Earl Bradford was arrested while on his way to work in Little Rock, Arkansas. Local authorities worked with an FBI agent and a detective from Dickinson to capture the suspect and book him at a nearby facility. Bradford will be charged with attempted murder, and he is expected to be extradited to face a trial in Texas. If he is found guilty, Bradford could be sentenced to life in prison.

Jennifer Schuett may finally have closure on this painful chapter in her life.  Her assailant has gone free for almost 20 years and most people believed he would never be caught, but now the alleged perpetrator is behind bars. Jennifer boasts that she should not be thought of as a victim, but as victorious.

Thanks to the persistence of Jennifer Schuett, members of the CARDT and modern technology, a man who brutally attacked a young girl may finally be brought to justice. At PeopleFinders.com we’re grateful for tools that help protect us and identify known criminals. You never know what type of person may be living in your neighborhood, but our Sexual Offender Search can help you find out. Use it to learn if there are registered sex offenders near your family.

Jennifer deserves respect and admiration for her bravery and persistence. We can all breathe a sigh of relief at the thought that the man who raped and left her for dead has finally been captured. Stay safe out there, and thank you for reading the PeopleFinders.com People Search blog.

For more current Sex Offender News, read the harrowing tale of Jaycee Dugard here.

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5 Responses to “Closure For Jennifer Schuett? Her Suspected Rapist Is Arrested 20 Years Later”

  1. Barbara Johnson says:

    Today I read the post on Jennifer Schuett. It has been seven years since I was assaulted and raped. I underwent a 45 min surgery on my knee to repair the damage. It has taken such a long time to heal emotionally from the trauma. I think Jennifer is so incredibly brave. God has a special reason for u to survive and help other victims, just as she is doing presently. A firing squad would have been a more appropriate method for a rapist that attacked a child. God will be the final judge. I think just living your life to the fullest and helping other people is the best healing process. A true sociopath or psychopath. I just wanted to say to Jenn that I hope u go far in life to accomplish your goals. You are beautiful. A trial is irrelevant, because we all know the judicial system leaves much to be desired in this country.

  2. Barbara Johnson says:

    Jennifer, u are an inspiration to all victims of violent crime. Barbie

  3. beth kasik says:

    Why was Dennis Bradford out of prison if he was arrested and found guilty for rape and cutting someone’s throat in 1997 ?

  4. Elizabeth says:

    On Jennifer Schuett-I felt the need to comment on this situation as yet another jail sentence that was yet again jokingly carried out -Sentenced to 12 yrs serve 3? What an insult to us all. Who is it that considers these offenses so trivial that they decide the sentence is cut to less than half? There was recently a situation where the accused, had he served his entire sentence ,would not have been available to perpetrate his latest offense which was to keep a child prisoner for almost two decades and father two children with her through rape. While this “Time served” “Time for good behavior” etc. crap – may have been a game within the system,it is now revealed to the general public and I do not think it will be tolerated any more. Time and again we are treated to the escapades of these fun loving guys who just won’t accept that slap on the wrist–AND I AM SICK OF IT. Give them a sentence as if it were your child/wife/mother/you-and have them serve it. And hopefully when they are released they can’t even swat a fly. Let alone rape and slit the throat of your child/wife/mother/you. It’s all worth at least one Madoff escapade – that is 150 yrs .

  5. william says:

    The thing about this case I can’t get off my mind is the fact that this guy had done this before, and yet was let out of prison. He kidnapped a woman, raped her, and slit her throat. Sound familiar? He got 20 years, and was let out after 4. So…. big surprise that he did it again, eh? When will we decide not to be such a nation of cowards and simply kill these scumbags the FIRST time the commit these horrible crimes? Are we really so stupid as to think these scumbags will stop… will somehow be “rehabilitated”? I’m about to the point where I believe we need to start going after the morons who let these killers back on the street…. be they lawmakers, judges, or parole board members. A few of their heads on pikes just might convince the other cowards that we’re serious. Death to rapists. Death to murderers. Death to child molesters. No prison sentences…. no second chances.

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