Man threatened to shoot 2-month-old baby before raping woman in Miami, police say

Police: Tavares Canty, 34, arrested Tuesday after fleeing from police officers

Police say Tavares Canty threatened to shoot a 2-month-old baby before raping a woman in Little Haiti.
Police say Tavares Canty threatened to shoot a 2-month-old baby before raping a woman in Little Haiti.

MIAMI – Tavares Canty, 34, threatened to shoot a 2-month-old baby before raping a woman last week in Miami's Little Haiti neighborhood, authorities said.

According to an arrest report, the victim and her baby were home alone April 26 after another person left to drop off her other children at school.

Police said Canty poked his head in the home and asked the victim, "Where did the lady go with all the kids?"

The victim told Canty that the other woman would be back shortly, but he then entered the home and pointed a gun at her, authorities said.

According to the arrest report, Canty ordered the victim to show him her breast before forcing her at gunpoint from the kitchen to the back bedroom.

Police said he threatened the victim’s baby with a gun in the bedroom and told the victim, "I'm going to hurt the baby if you don't stay quiet."

Police said he then forced the victim to disrobe, masturbated in front of her and then raped her.

The victim was taken to the Roxcy Bolton Rape Treatment Center after the attack, and the results of the rape kit were submitted to the Miami-Dade Forensic Laboratory, authorities said.

DNA collected from a swab of the victim's right breast led police to identify Canty as the rapist, police said.

About an hour before the rape, surveillance video from another woman's home a few blocks away shows a man, who police believe to be Canty, approaching the 29-year-old woman on her porch as she was leaving her home with her dog around 7 a.m. April 26. 

Authorities said that upon seeing Canty, the woman quickly tried to run back into her home, but Canty grabbed her and held her in the doorway. 

Police said the woman was able to fight back and push Canty away. The video shows her running away from her home and the man fleeing in the opposite direction.

According to the arrest report, Canty targeted another woman Sunday while she was showering inside her home.

Police said the victim saw Canty watching her through her shower window and screamed, causing Canty to flee the scene.

"She was taking a shower and getting ready for school, and then she screamed my name and said somebody was watching her through the bathroom window, and then we all went outside to go see and he was already gone," the 18-year-old victim's sister, Roseline, said. 

The victim's father told Local 10 News reporter Terrell Forney that he was sleeping when the incident happened.

"I'm happy because police caught him," Joclyn Creed said. 

The woman identified Canty in a photo lineup, authorities said.

Police said Canty was arrested Wednesday morning after officers converged on a home in the 2400 block of Northwest 67th Street.

Police said Canty ran through the yard and hopped over a fence, but was apprehended by authorities.
Police said Canty initially tensed his arms and began tucking his arms into his waistband before officers were able to arrest him.

"He knew we were looking for him. He knew we were out there in force and searching for him," Miami Police Chief Jorge Colina said.

Canty faces charges of armed sexual battery, kidnapping, armed kidnapping, attempted armed kidnapping and voyeurism.

He appeared in court Thursday, where he was ordered held without bond. 

He told the judge he isn't interested in hiring an attorney.

"Sir, they're very serious charges," Miami-Dade County Judge Mindy Glazer told Canty. "You should have an attorney."

"I don't want one," Canty said. 

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