A Provo man charged Thursday with rape and kidnapping will face a preliminary hearing on those charges in 4th Circuit Court on March 1.
Jack Jessop, 45, 365 S. State Street, Apt. 11, was arrested early Wednesday morning after a Provo woman reported she was abducted and raped at gunpoint in northwest Provo. Jessop is charged with aggravated sexual assault, aggravated kidnapping, aggravated robbery and with being a habitual criminal - all first-degree felonies.Fourth Circuit Judge Patrick McGuire ordered the defendant, who has a record of at least two felony convictions in California, held in the county jail without bail.
Jessop's arrest followed several weeks of surveillance by police.
Police are evaluating evidence from a series of recent burglaries, assaults and other crimes to determine whether they are connected.
Early Wednesday morning, police said, a man hid in the back seat of the 22-year-old victim's car while she was inside a northwest Provo convenience store buying gas. Capt. George Pierpont said when she returned to the car, the man threatened her with a handgun and demanded that she drive to a Provo location.
After attacking the woman, the man drove the victim back to the convenience store and fled on foot. The victim, who had noticed police vehicles in the area prior to the incident, flagged down officers and reported the assault.
Pierpont said officers were unable to locate keys to the victim's car or the handgun believed used in the incident despite an extensive search of the area. Pierpont has asked that anyone who finds a gun or keys in northwest Provo contact the police department.
Pierpont said police detectives had Jessop under surveillance after receiving information about his past criminal history from California authorities.