A man who broke into a Talmadge woman’s home last year, raped her, then stole her car, pleaded guilty Thursday to five felony counts, including forcible rape.

Leonard Derrick, 43, is due to be sentenced to 43 years to life in state prison for the March 22, 2019, attack on the 33-year-old victim. Derrick, who also pleaded guilty to assault, dissuading a witness, vehicle theft and vehicle burglary, will be required to register as a sex offender for life. Sentencing is slated for May 1.

Prosecutors say he broke into the home in the 4400 block of 50th Street, threatened to kill the woman and assaulted her.

After the rape, he stole her car, dumped it not far from the crime scene and took cash, jewelry and other items from the vehicle, according to Deputy District Attorney Jessica Coto.

After he fled the scene, the victim exited the home through her bathroom window and alerted a neighbor to what happened, as Derrick had taken her cell phone.

DNA evidence gathered during the victim’s sexual assault exam identified Derrick as the perpetrator, leading to his arrest about a week later during a traffic stop, Coto said. His DNA was on file for a 1999 conviction for robbery with a gun.

Just days before he was arrested, internet searches on Derrick’s phone indicated he searched, “How long does it take for a rape kit result to come in?” according to the prosecutor.

–City News Service

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