AP NEWS

S. Carolina man pleads not guilty to kidnapping Maine woman

December 31, 2019 GMT

AUBURN, Maine (AP) — A South Carolina man charged with kidnapping a Maine woman who said she was repeatedly raped pleaded not guilty.

Dustin Beach, of Green Pond, South Carolina, pleaded not guilty Monday to federal charges of kidnapping, interstate stalking and four counts of witness tampering.

The Sun Journal reports that a judge previously ordered Beach, 25, held without bail on the kidnapping charge. That was before other charges were added.

Lewiston police arrested Beach in July after responding to a call from a woman at a motel who reported that she’d been hit with a hammer.

She told officers that Beach offered to take her on an errand in South Carolina, but held her against her will and sexually assaulted her multiple times on the drive to Maine.

Beach denied that he kidnapped the woman. He said she had traveled voluntarily and that they had consensual sex. His attorney asked Monday for more time file additional motions before trial.

Beach faces kidnapping charges in South Carolina for a similar incident last February, officials said.