DNA evidence leads to conviction in rape committed in 2003 near Topeka – The Topeka Capital-Journal


Nineteen years after he raped a woman just south of Topeka, a man authorities linked to the case through DNA evidence was convicted Wednesday of that crime.

A Shawnee County District Court jury after a three-day trial found Pernell Adam Mack Jr. guilty of rape, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated burglary, aggravated robbery and aggravated criminal sodomy, said District Attorney Mike Kagay.

A sentencing date hasn’t been set, he said.

The victim was 23 years old at the time the crime was committed, Shawnee County Sheriff’s Office spokeswoman Abigail Christian said when Mack, then 35, was arrested in April 2020.

The crime was committed at a mobile home park just south of Topeka, according to a news release Kagay put out Wednesday evening.

The victim arrived about 3:40 a.m. April 16, 2003, at her home, where she entered, was grabbed from behind and put in a chokehold, Kagay said.

One of the two people present put a gun to the woman’s head while the other removed cash and other items from her pockets, he said.

The woman was then pistol-whipped before the two sexually assaulted her, Kagay said.

The sheriff’s office collected evidence at the scene and initiated an investigation but had no leads suggesting who the assailants might be, he said.

Then, on Feb. 14, 2020, the Kansas Bureau of Investigation notified the sheriff’s office that Mack had been identified as “the contributor of DNA left at the crime scene,” Kagay said.

The sheriff’s office located Mack and confirmed the DNA match, he said.

His office charged Mack with crimes linked to the sexual assault in April 2020.

No one else has been arrested in the case involved.

The case against Mack was prosecuted by Chief Deputy District Attorney Brett Watson and Deputy District Attorney Andrew Holmes. 

Tim Hrenchir can be reached at threnchir@gannett.com or 785-213-5934.