Former Walker Lake resident gets five years on attempted rape charges

Jeffrey Noel Van Arkel

Former Walker Lake resident, Jeffrey Noel Van Arkel, 36, was recently charged in Oregon for a 2005 rape in Lane County.

Van Arkel took a plea agreement with Lane County prosecutors and received a five-year sentence.

He had been charged with first-degree sexual abuse and first-degree rape but with the plea deal, the charges were reduced to attempted first-degree rape.

Eugene, Ore. officers traveled to Mineral County in December to take custody of Van Arkel from Mineral County Sheriff’s Office, after Oregon state police notified the Eugene officers that male DNA found on a 16-year-old female during a 2005 sexual assault examination mated the sample from Van Arkel in the statewide database.

The victim’s evidence kit had been sent to the Oregon State Crime Lab in 2005 but was not tested and became part of a backlog of many untested kits. The untested kits were tested in 2016 after $2 million in federal grants was obtained to test 2,600 backlogged sexual assault cases in three Oregon counties.

The plea deal allowed Van Arkel to plead guilty to an attempted rape charge because the case centered on allegations that he had had forcible sexual intercourse with the accuser.

The victim in the case did not attend the proceedings.

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