Police Expect More Charges in Sex Assault Investigation Involving West County Teen
Manchester police say additional charges are being sought against Joshua Witkowski of West County after dozens of girls told police they were assaulted by the 19-year-old.
The following information was supplied by the Manchester Police Department. It does not indicate a conviction where an arrest was made.
Police now say approximately 25 girls have now come forward in connection to a West County teen charged with felony sexual assault.
Joshua D. Witkowski, 19, of the 200 block of Ballwin Avenue in Winchester is charged in connection to a case involving a 14-year-old female. As previously reported by Patch, police said the teenage girl did not consent to the act and DNA evidence was used to link Witkowski to the alleged assault.
(Read Previous Story: West County Teen Charged in Sexual Assault of 14-Year-Old)
Manchester Police Sergeant Dan Rehm tells Patch more charges against Witkowski may be coming. He said additonal police departments, including Ballwin, St. Louis County, Des Peres and Town and Country, are now involved in the investigation. Some are sending cases to the St. Louis County prosecutor for review.
"I've talked to girls from South County, I've talked to girls from North County, but most of them are from here in the West County area," Rehm tells Patch. He said there are six or seven new cases police are working on that will be sent to the prosecutor for review where girls have said their interaction with Witkowski was not consensual. "There are different levels. Not everyone of them is considered forciable rape. Some might be sexual assault. Some might be sexual misconduct."
Rehm also said many of the girls he's spoken with did not want to file reports.
I've talked to a couple others who've had something happen here, but they've wanted to remain anonymous or not file a report," Rehm said. "Most of them are just scared. The embarrassment of it all. A lot of them because of their age."
He said most of the girls who have contacted police are between the ages of 14 and 16, but he believes one was 17. Rehm said Manchester police have written two reports in connection to Witkowski, including the initial report in involving the 14-year-old.
Rehm said most of the girls say Witkowski approached them on Facebook or they met him through mutual friends. As previously reported by Patch, some sirls said they met him randomly at area parks. Patch also found Witkowski soliciting dates on the online dating website DateHookup.com, but his profile is now inaccessible.
Witkowski remains in the St. Louis County jail. Tuesday, a judge increased his bond from $15,000 to $30,000 cash only, Rehm said.
"In light of the additional investigations that are going on, they decided to increase his bond," Rehm tells Patch.
Rehm does not anticipate to hear from the prosecutor on additional charges until next week
Authorities are still searching for more girls who came in contact with Witkowski. Detectives are asking other possible victims to contact the Manchester Police Department at 636 227-1410 or 636-527-9200.
Anonymous tips can be made to the St. Louis Regional CrimeStoppers at 866-317-TIPS (8477).
*Please contact Local Editor Gabrielle Biondo with any questions regarding the above reports.
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