The Herald Bulletin

August 26, 2013

Rape victim survived 'horrific' attack, police say

Teen charged with attack on 93-year-old

By Dani Palmer
The Herald Bulletin


Amelia Rudolf, 93, has been staying with family since July 16, when she was subjected to what Anderson Police Chief Larry Crenshaw called a "horrific and unimaginable" attack in her own home.

"I would like to go back because it's the house that my husband built for me and my family," Rudolf said Monday afternoon during a news conference at the Anderson Police Department. "And I've been happy there all my life until just now."

But Rudolf's not sure that she'll be able to go back after a man broke into her home that night in July and sexually assaulted her. Maybe after some time has passed, she said. 

Her alleged attacker, Iquise V. Taylor, 17, was arrested Friday and, already incarcerated at the Madison County Youth Center, waived onto adult court. Taylor was formally charged Monday with rape, criminal confinement, strangulation, burglary and violation of probation.

The attack happened after midnight on July 16 in Rudolf’s home, in the 3600 block of Hamilton Place in the Polish Acre neighborhood.

According to the probable cause affidavit, Taylor kicked in Rudolf's locked back door and confined her to the bed, covering her mouth with his hand and assaulting her. Nothing was reported stolen from the home and nothing was vandalized.

A witness told police that he was on his front porch around midnight when Taylor came up to him and asked if he had a cigarette. That witness noted Taylor did not have any shoes on and was acting odd — police found a footprint on Rudolf's back door that they believed to be a barefoot print or someone wearing socks but no shoes.

Taylor, who initially denied the attack during an interview in early August, did provide a DNA sample to police that matched DNA taken from Rudolf, the affidavit said.

Her youngest daughter, Tresa Hale, said she felt "disgust" when she received a call from her brother about the attack. It was "nothing I expected in a million years," she noted as she recalled that phone conversation.

Rudolf, surrounded by her children and grandchildren Monday, was thankful to police for their quick work and to her family, who were her strength.

"I didn't think I would live long enough to see who did it," she said, "but I'm happy it turned out the way it is right now."

"Our main focus was for her to overcome this, and we're a strong family, we're a big family, and we have each other's backs," Hale said. "And she is doing wonderfully under the circumstances. I do want to say this, she's courageous, she's brave, she's strong and she is our hero. She really is our hero." 

Because of her mother's strength and the Anderson Police Department's work, she said, the attacker "will be off the streets now, hopefully forever, and that's one less criminal Anderson and the world will have to worry about." 

"May God help him. Judgment day will come for him," Hale said. "I don't know what's going to happen with the case, that's in the hands of the prosecutor now. I just know in my heart that when, if, he lives a life in prison, I hope it will be terrifying for him. I can't help but say that. And I know when his judgment day comes, I want him to be terrified when the devil comes to take him." 

On Monday, Crenshaw said he was thankful to the community for their assistance and support — "this case has really touched their hearts" — and the work of his officers. 

While Taylor, who was enrolled in Anderson Community Schools, didn't live far from Rudolf in the 3600 block of Burton Place, Crenshaw said, police haven't yet discovered a motive behind the attack. The suspect hasn't given them much to go off, he added.

Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings said Taylor is no stranger to law enforcement as a juvenile offender, having been in trouble as young as age 10. As of Monday evening, Taylor had not been appointed an attorney and calls to his family were not returned.

The Herald Bulletin does not usually identify rape victims, but Rudolf identified herself at the news conference, surrounded by her family.

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