Deputies are investigating an alleged rape at the Washington County Detention Center involving inmates sharing a cell unit, in which the victim was raped, tortured and forced to perform various acts, the Sheriff's Office states.
One of the suspects was accused earlier this year of holding a machete to the throat of a taxi driver, according to the Washington County Sheriff’s Office.
Javaughntaiye Willis, 21, and Jdonta Britt, 19, face charges of rape, terroristic threatening, second-degree battery and acting in concert to commit two or more felonies, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
The rape involved “detainees housed in the same cell. Sheriff’s Office detention personnel took swift action to protect the victim as soon as they became aware of the situation, and detectives are actively investigating the crime,” according to a Sheriff’s Office statement released Monday.
Kelly Cantrell with the sheriff's office said they are conducting an internal review to ensure that all of their policies and procedures were followed. She said their Criminal Investigation Division unit is in charge of the investigation.
A probable cause report states Willis was housed in cell M-23 at the detention center with Britt, the alleged victim and a separate eyewitness. From 9 p.m. on Dec. 12 to about 1 p.m. on Dec. 13, the alleged victim was beaten, threatened, raped, forced to perform a sex act and made to drink the suspects' urine, according to a probable cause report from Det. Scott McAfee.
"The suspects tortured the the victim by slapping, punching, kicking, elbowing, kneeing and using edged weapons to cut him," McAfee's report states. "The suspects threatened to cut off his pinky finger if the victim did not obey their commands or if he reported the abuse to authorities."
The suspects also forced the victim to brush his teeth with a toothbrush that had been soiled, the report states.
Detectives said they found evidence to support the victim's allegations and plan to recommend new charges to filed against Willis and Britt in connection with the reported rape. Investigators collected an eyewitness statement, a razor, blood and photographs of the victim's injuries, according to the Sheriff's Office.
Willis is being held at the detention center awaiting trial in an aggravated robbery case involving a local taxi driver, according to court records. He and co-defendant Alberto Delatorre have a trial set for Jan. 22 in Washington County Circuit Court, according to court records.
Britt is in jail also awaiting trial, in a robbery case involving the beating of a man at Brookhaven Apartments in Springdale. His trial is set for Feb. 13 in Washington County, court records show.
Willis pleaded not guilty in August to aggravated robbery, theft of property and terroristic threatening, among other charges. Willis is accused of holding a machete to the throat of a cab driver for NWA Taxi at approximately 2:45 a.m. July 19 at Betty Jo Drive in Fayetteville, police said.
The driver said three men came up to his taxi, one wielding a machete and demanded money. The three allegedly took the driver’s money, wallet, and cell phone, according to the taxi company.
Delatorre, 18, and a 17-year-old boy were also arrested in connection with the incident. Delatorre was released from jail on $3,500 bond the next day, according to jail records.
The theft victim called Fayetteville Police after the robbery.
Shortly before 6:40 a.m. Fayetteville Police made contact with occupants at a home on Betty Jo Drive who had a possible link to the robbery.
At approximately 7:11 a.m. six additional police units arrived on scene. Police were seen patting down one man who was inside the home, two others were seen sitting in the yard of the home.
Shortly after that, police told a man he had five seconds to come out or they are going in. Officers went inside the home minutes after but did not bring anyone out.
Just before 8 a.m. police handcuffed a black man at the scene wearing a white tank top and took him away in a police cruiser.
At approximately 8:15 a.m. a white man wearing a grey shirt and black shorts was also arrested. A woman at the home was seen screaming as the man was taken away. Investigators continued to question the residents at the home after the second arrest.
The items allegedly stolen from the taxi driver were returned, according to police.
Britt was arrested earlier this year with another man and a teenager implicated in an aggravated robbery case. Springdale police received a call around 11:50 p.m. in reference to a three black males assaulting a Hispanic male. The caller told police the suspects left in a maroon Chevy Impala.
Officers quickly located the car, but the suspects ran off. Britt and another suspect were caught, while the teen got away, police said.
The victim, 34-year-old Jose Jesus Alvarez-Meja, of Springdale, was found face down at the apartment. Witnesses told police one of the suspects hit Alvarez-Meja, then the other two joined the fight, jumping up and down on the victim who had fallen down.
Alvarez-Meja was taken to Northwest Medical Center in Springdale in serious condition and later taken by medical helicopter to a Springfield, Mo., hospital.
Police found Alvarez-Meja’s bloody backpack inside the Impala. One of the suspects also had the victim’s wallet, according to a police report. Investigators do not believe the suspects knew Alvarez-Meja. He had just arrived home when they allegedly beat and robbed him.