Meridian Star

November 17, 2012

Man charged in kidnapping and rape

Photo By Paula Merritt
The Meridian Star

MERIDIAN — By Brian Livingston

    A Clarke County man has been charged by authorities with the Lauderdale County Sheriff's department with the abduction and sexual assault of a Meridian woman.

    Sheriff Billy Sollie said Friday morning that Darren Lozell Houston, 30, of 51 School Street in Pachuta, was arrested at his home without incident around 4:30 p.m. Thursday by members of the LCSD and the Clarke County Sheriff's Department.

    Houston has been charged with kidnapping and rape. His bond in Lauderdale County Justice Court was set at $50,000 for each charge.

    Sollie said Houston allegedly approached a woman in Meridian early Thursday morning.

    "The adult female victim was walking to work around 5 a.m. when he allegedly pulled up beside her in his vehicle and offered her a ride," Sollie said. "That is when he took her out in the county and reportedly assaulted her."

    Sollie said the victim was able to call authorities after she was released. She was taken to a Meridian hospital where she was interviewed by authorities and treated for minor injuries.

    Sollie said later in the day Houston's whereabouts were discovered and a search warrant for his arrest was executed by Lauderdale and Clarke county deputies and investigators. Sollie said Houston's vehicle was processed for physical evidence.

    Houston is currently being held in the Lauderdale County Adult Detention Facility in Meridian.