Man accused of sexually assaulting woman during home invasion in Fort Lauderdale

Police: Victim, who uses walker, was watching TV when suspect barged into home


FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. – A woman who uses a walker was sexually assaulted Tuesday during a home invasion in Fort Lauderdale, authorities said.

The victim's age was not publicly released.

According to an arrest report, the woman was watching TV in her living room when James Lee Brinkley, 53, who is homeless, "barged" into her apartment, punched her in the face, put his hand over her mouth and demanded money.

Police said Brinkley threatened to kill the woman if she screamed.

The victim told authorities she pointed to her purse and Brinkley took $40 in cash from her wallet.

She said he then dragged her by the arm into the bedroom and threw her on the bed.

Police said Brinkley tied the victim's hands behind her back with shoelaces and gagged her by placing socks in her mouth.

According to the arrest report, the intruder pulled off the victim's clothes and digitally penetrated her.

He told her he would come back and kill her if she told police, authorities said.

Police said the woman went to the sofa in her living room once Brinkley left and began "making noises" to get her neighbors' attention.

Authorities said a neighbor eventually found the victim and called police.

The woman was taken to the Nancy J. Cotterman Treatment Center, where a rape kit was completed.

Police said the victim recognized Brinkley as someone she had seen in the courtyard of her apartment complex before and told authorities that some neighbors knew who he was.

An officer who patrols the area near the apartment complex approached Brinkley on Wednesday, at which time authorities said he was found in possession of drug paraphernalia and the victim's debit card.

According to the arrest report, Brinkley initially denied being in the victim's apartment and said he found her debit card a few days before the incident.

Police said he later changed his story and said he had entered her home and found her naked, tied up and gagged on her bed.

Detectives said he later asked why he was being looked at for "robbery and fondling" the victim.

Brinkley was arrested on charges of sexual assault on a person with special conditions, home invasion robbery and kidnapping.  

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