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Monday
Mar072011

Alleged ‘East Coast Rapist’ to Cops: What Took You So Long?

Federal Bureau of Investigation(NEW HAVEN, Conn.) -- The man accused of raping 17 women in four states over a dozen years asked the police, "Why haven't you picked me up sooner?"

Aaron Thomas, 39, made his first court appearance in a Connecticut court Monday as police departments along the East Coast closed 12 years of cold cases and celebrated the mix of old-fashioned investigative work and modern technology that led to his arrest.

Police said that Thomas' DNA positively connects him to a dozen rapes and sexual assaults attributed to the so-called "East Coast Rapist." He was arrested Friday in New Haven, Conn.

Thomas appeared in court wearing a tan shirt, black ball cap and sunglasses. His wrists and ankles were shackled and he was surrounded by five marshals. He kept his head down through the hearing and never spoke.

Prosecutors said Thomas displayed a Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde personality when it came to women and told the court he confessed to the rapes following his arrest.

Neither Thomas nor his lawyer entered a plea on his behalf. Bond was set at $1 million in the sex assault case and an additional $500,000 bond set for an extradition case.

Thomas, who is accused of violently attacking women and girls with a variety of weapons in Virginia, Maryland, Connecticut, and Rhode Island, tried to hang himself Saturday in his jail cell hours after his arrest.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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