Document: serial rape suspect linked with DNA, clothes

Document: serial rape suspect linked with DNA, clothes
Billy Ray Johnson, 33, a serial rape suspect in Bakersfield, Calif., is seen in a booking photo released Tuesday, Dec. 17, 2013, by the Kern County Sheriff's Office.

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KBAK/KBFX) -- The man accused of carrying out a string of sexual assaults in east Bakersfield last summer is tied to the crimes by DNA and clothing evidence, according to a search warrant obtained by Eyewitness News.

Billy Ray Johnson, 33, is accused of sexually assaulting at least four people from July 1 through Aug. 19.

He was arrested on an unrelated gun charge on Oct. 15.

The warrant states that Johnson was "connected to these offenses based on the commonality of the modus operandi in these offenses, as well as DNA evidence."

In each assault, victims described a similarly dressed man: black ski mask, black hooded sweatshirt, black gloves and a backpack, among other attributes.

When authorities searched Johnson's home, located on the 900 block of Quantico Avenue in Bakersfield, they found clothing the same size as the clothes Johnson was wearing at the time of his October arrest.

Authorities also found shoes and a hat, which they claim to be significant to the investigation because shoe marks were left at the spot of three sexual assaults, and the size of the hat could be compared to the size of a ski mask found earlier in the investigation.

Police also obtained a pack of cigarettes from Johnson when he was arrested, and at least one victim described the suspect as having a "distinct smell of cigarette smoke," according to the warrant.

Johnson is scheduled for court on Jan. 31.