Blood on victim's shirt linked to sex offender

Posted at 9:09 AM, Mar 10, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-10 23:03:26-05

New disturbing details have been released in an attempted sexual assault of a teenage girl in Gilbert.

The Gilbert Police Department said 46-year-old Carl Wayne Price was arrested by police on Wednesday around 5:30 p.m.

On Saturday, a 14-year-old girl told police that she was at a Cooley Station North neighborhood park near Recker and Williams Field roads, when the incident happened around 7:40 a.m. 

According to court documents, Price physically restrained the girl from behind while covering her mouth and moved her from an open grass area to behind some bushes and a wall.

The victim resisted and threw herself back against Price as he shoved her to the closed off area.

Price forced the 14-year-old face down into rocks and caused injury to her head and face. He then forced her onto her back and sat on her chest, according to police records.

The suspect used both hands to strangle the girl and told her to be quiet and he would let her live.

The girl fought against Price using her knees and nails. During the attack, the man pulled her shirt and bra up and unbuttoned her pants, police said in the report.

The girl continued to fight off the suspect, and he ran from the scene.

When the victim contacted police, officers found blood on her shirt that led them to Price.

When Price was arrested he had scratches on his arms and was unable to explain the injuries.

Police searched Price’s home and found a shirt with possible scratch marks and dirt on it. A pair of pants with red stains was also located in his house.

Price lives with his wife and step daughters. No one answered the door at the home where Price was living -- only about one mile away from the crime scene. The home is right across the street from an elementary school and around the corner from a park.

Price is a registered sex offender who recently moved to the Valley from out of state. He wasn't even listed on the Arizona Department of Public Safety's sex offender online registry. 

“If you’ve been told to stay away from kids, why would you choose to be close to a school, close to a park?" asked neighbor Kristy Belley.

Neighbors expect that they’d be notified when a sex offender moves in to their neighborhood, but that wasn’t the case here.

Sergeant Sanger says there's a delay in obtaining court and criminal records from out of state. Sanger says Price did everything by the book -- notifying police when he moved from California to Chandler in November and then moving to Gilbert about two months ago.

“That created more confusion and timing where now Gilbert is tasked with doing the assessment," Sanger said.

“How does it happen that we don’t get a notice?" Belley argues. "And if we did get a notice, would he have been approved for that location?" 

The community is only notified if the sex offender is a level two or three sex offender. Had police determined Price to be a level one offender before this attack, the community wouldn't have been notified either way.

Price made his first appearance in court on Thursday. He's facing charges of sexual assault, aggravated assault on a minor, and kidnapping. He was booked into jail on Wednesday around 10 p.m.