Man arrested after Tavernier woman beaten, raped, robbed

Johnny Lee Hayes, 53, arrested Monday on warrant


TAVERNIER, Fla. – A South Florida man is facing multiple charges after he beat, raped and robbed a 39-year-old woman from Tavernier, authorities said.

The attack was reported just after 9 p.m. March 13 on the southbound side of U.S. 1, just east of the Tavernier Creek Bridge.

According to Monroe County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Becky Herrin, Johnny Lee Hayes, 53, grabbed a woman who was walking along the street, dragged her into bushes, beat her with a blunt object, threatened to kill her and then raped her.

The woman told detectives that Hayes told her that he would let her live if she stopped trying to fight him off.

According to the victim, Hayes choked her until she lost consciousness and she awakened to find him still on top of her, raping her and hitting her.

Detectives said the woman claimed that Hayes confessed during the attack to doing the same thing to six other women. She said he also told her that he had been to prison.

After the rape, Hayes took the woman's money, told her to wait 15 minutes before leaving and said that he would be watching her, Herrin said.

The woman said she tried to wave down someone for help, but nobody would stop. She eventually walked to a nearby store, where an employee called 911.

The victim was taken to a hospital to be treated for her extensive injuries, including broken ribs, a broken bone in her face and numerous contusions.

DNA believed to be from the suspect was collected and sent to the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, which identified the DNA as belonging to Hayes.

Hayes, who has an extensive arrest history, was arrested Monday on a warrant.

He faces charges of forcible sexual battery with a weapon, kidnapping, aggravated battery and robbery with a weapon.

He is being held in jail on $525,000 bond.

Records show that Hayes has been arrested in Monroe County many times over the past two decades on charges of drug trafficking, sales and possession, robbery, tampering with a witness, escape, burglary, driving with a suspended license and violating probation.



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