| Crime |

Phoenix P.D. Solves 11-Year-Old Cold Case. Suspect Left Victim for Dead in Desert, Police Say

Keep New Times Free
I Support
  • Local
  • Community
  • Journalism
  • logo

Support the independent voice of Phoenix and help keep the future of New Times free.

The Phoenix Police Department announced last night that an arrest has been made in a sexual assault/ kidnapping that happened in 1999.

The Phoenix P.D. says DNA evidence retrieved at the scene of the alleged crimes match the DNA of Clayton Roinuse, who was arrested yesterday.

According to police, on January 6, 1999, Roinuse went into a business near 300 East Camelback Road. He robbed the store and kidnapped an employee.

Roinuse, police say, then took the woman to the East Valley, where he sexually assaulted her. When he was done, he shot the woman and left her for dead in the desert -- only, she wasn't dead.

The victim managed to crawl across the desert "a great distance away" from where she'd been sexually assaulted, shot, and left to die.

She bumped into a man who happened to be in the area hunting.

The hunter called police and the woman was saved by paramedics.

It's unclear how the PPD obtained Roinuse's DNA. In many cases, when DNA is matched in a cold case crime, the person to whom the DNA belongs is already in custody for another crime. An inmate's DNA is collected whenever a convict enters the corrections system and stored in a database. The Phoenix Police Department did not immediately respond to our email asking if that's how Roinuse's was obtained.

In total, Roinuse faces charges of attempted murder, armed robbery, sexual assault, and kidnapping.

Keep Phoenix New Times Free... Since we started Phoenix New Times, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Phoenix, and we would like to keep it that way. Offering our readers free access to incisive coverage of local news, food and culture. Producing stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands, with gutsy reporting, stylish writing, and staffers who've won everything from the Society of Professional Journalists' Sigma Delta Chi feature-writing award to the Casey Medal for Meritorious Journalism. But with local journalism's existence under siege and advertising revenue setbacks having a larger impact, it is important now more than ever for us to rally support behind funding our local journalism. You can help by participating in our "I Support" membership program, allowing us to keep covering Phoenix with no paywalls.

We use cookies to collect and analyze information on site performance and usage, and to enhance and customize content and advertisements. By clicking 'X' or continuing to use the site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more, visit our cookies policy and our privacy policy.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.


Join the New Times community and help support independent local journalism in Phoenix.