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Another victim linked to the Butte County physician assistant accused of rape and kidnapping

By Tyler May, tmay@krcrtv.com
Published On: Sep 07 2013 12:47:37 AM CDT
Lonnie Keith mugshot photo
CHICO, Calif. -

Butte County's District Attorney is saying a third person has been sexually assaulted in the case of a physician's assistant is accused of kidnapping two Chico State students; raping one of them and trying to rape the other.

District Attorney Mike Ramsey said the victim is a Chico State Student, and is one of the nine unsolved sexual assault cases Chico police have been investigating.

Lonnie Keith was arrested in January of this year.  Police said the 41-year-old had syringes, handcuffs, leg shackles and sedatives inside his car when he ran a stop sign in the South Campus Neighborhood.

The district attorney’s office says they found traces of the same sedative in the latest victim - that were found in Keith’s other victims.  Ramsey says the victim was walking alone back in April of 2012 after a night of heavy drinking.

The victim told investigators she doesn't remember the incident itself but remembers being dropped off by someone that night west of Walnut Street.

Ramsey says there is no DNA linking Keith to this victim but the zip ties and the sedatives led investigators to believe Keith is responsible.

"This particular victim the circumstances and the forensic information do tie us to modus operandi of Lonnie Keith,” said Ramsey.

Keith was charged Thursday with felony kidnapping to commit another crime and a felony assault with intent to commit a felony.

Keith will face another preliminary hearing for these new charges on September 18.  The district attorney’s office is hoping to merge these new charges with his previous ones before Keith’s trial in October.