By Staff

DALLAS, Texas (CBSDFW.COM) – A serial rapist who terrorized Dallas in between 1982 and 1985 has been sentenced to life in prison.

David Thomas Hawkins, 75, was arrested Aug. 19 of 2020 for the aggravated sexual assault of a Dallas woman in 1985.

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In 2005, a survivor contacted the Dallas Police Department’s Sexual Assault Unit and requested that her case be reopened. With advances in DNA technology, the evidence collected from her case and other related cases was submitted for further testing, DPD stated.

The testing was conducted through the next four years (2006-2010) and DNA profiles were obtained and uploaded into the Combined DNA Index System (CODIS) database. It was discovered the suspect DNA from four Dallas cases matched the suspect DNA from two cases of a similar nature that occurred in 1980 in Shreveport, Louisiana. However, there was no identifiable suspect.

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For years, detectives investigated these cases and eliminated possible suspects through DNA. The suspect – later identified as Hawkins – remained unidentified until 2020 when his DNA was subjected to genealogical research and analysis.

Hawkins has a prior conviction for rape of which he was arrested for in Fort Smith, Arkansas in 1973. He entered a plea of nolo contendere and was sentenced to 30 years confinement with 9 years suspended. His DNA was never collected and entered in CODIS because it predated the requirement to do so, police said. He was released on parole in 1977.

Hawkins has lived in Fort Worth and the surrounding area since that time.

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In each of the aggravated sexual assaults which occurred in Dallas, the suspect would break into the victim’s residence during the middle of the night, threaten the victim with a weapon and sexually assault them. Staff