Cold case cracked: 67-year-old Cleveland man arrested in 1981 rape investigation

Cold case cracked: 67-year-old Cleveland man arrested in 1981 rape investigation
Julio Rentas (Source: US Marshals Service)

CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Federal and local law enforcement agents announced the arrest of a rape suspect who has been on the run for nearly 40 years.

Julio Rentas was arrested on Sept. 9 in Puerto Rico, according to the U.S. Marshals Service.

The 67-year-old is accused of sneaking into the bedroom of a 14-year-old girl on Jan. 4, 1981 and raping her.

Rentas was initially arrested on Jan. 25, 1981 with a court date set months later in March.

Investigators say Rentas did not appear for his court hearing and since spent decades eluding police.

The Cold Case Unit of the Northern Ohio Violent Fugitive Task Force in Cleveland gathered information from several of Rentas' associates, who indicated that he has been hiding in Puerto Rico since the early 2000s.

“No matter how far fugitives flee and no matter how long they think they can hide, the United States Marshals Service will never give up on looking for them and we will always bring justice to the victims of these horrendous crimes,” U.S. Marshal Pete Elliott said.

Rentas is scheduled to appear for an extradition hearing in Puerto Rico on Thursday.

The Cleveland Division of Police, Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s Department, and County Prosecutor’s Office assisted in the investigation and apprehension of Rentas.

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