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Rape suspect pleads guilty after quarter century on the lam

Posted September 7

— A former Washington state man who skipped his rape trial in 1990 has pleaded guilty after authorities found him living in Oklahoma under another name last year.

The Kitsap Sun newspaper reports that 71-year-old Ronald Lee Paulson, formerly of Poulsbo (PAWLZ'-bo), northwest of Seattle, faces up to 12 years in prison when he's sentenced in November. He was initially charged in 1987 after he admitted to child welfare workers that he had sexually assaulted a girl he knew over several years.

The case went cold as officers who worked it retired or moved on, but a neighboring department advised Poulsbo police of the active warrant for his arrest. Investigators found him in May 2016 using the name Warren Big-Eagle and living in Shawnee, Oklahoma.

Paulson entered modified guilty pleas Wednesday in Kitsap County Superior Court to statutory rape, indecent liberties and bail jumping.

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