A Bowling Green massage therapist and a Morgantown woman are accused of bribing a witness in a rape investigation.
A Warren County grand jury indicted Christopher Allan Lindsey, 32, on two counts of first-degree rape and a count of bribing a witness.
Lindsey is set to appear Monday in Warren Circuit Court to be arraigned on the charges, which stem from events alleged to have occurred Feb. 20 at a booth Lindsey rented at Sun Suites Salon and Spa on Chestnut Street.
The grand jury also indicted Bethanie Buchan, 33, of Morgantown, on a count of bribing a witness.
The woman identified as the sexual assault victim reported the incident to the Bowling Green Police Department on March 2.
When she reported the incident, the alleged victim told police she had visited Lindsey for previous massage therapy appointments, but a session with Lindsey on Feb. 20 became uncomfortable when he began rubbing her inner thigh near her genitalia, according to prior court testimony.
The woman reported Lindsey had penetrative intercourse and digitally penetrated her during the session, an arrest citation said.
During a preliminary hearing in March in Warren District Court, BGPD Detective Ryan Dillon testified that the woman was “frozen in fear” during the encounter and a prior experience as a sexual assault victim made her reluctant to report the incident to police sooner.
Police made contact with Lindsey on March 3 at his workplace, and his account of what happened evolved over time, Dillon testified in March.
“(Lindsey) said there was no communication, but with the way she was acting, he was under the impression that she wanted this to happen, but he did say that she never verbally consented to anything and that she seemed uncomfortable after it happened,” Dillon testified.
At one point, Lindsey asked police what would happen to him “if he made a mistake,” his arrest citation said.
Lindsey was arrested on initial charges of first-degree rape and first-degree sodomy, but Dillon testified that two days after the arrest, police learned Sun Suites received a call from a woman who claimed to be calling on behalf of Lindsey and asked for the alleged victim’s phone number, Dillon said in March.
Police followed up by examining recorded phone calls from the Warren County Regional Jail and discovered a conversation between Lindsey and his girlfriend.
“In that jail phone call, Lindsey encourages his girlfriend to get in contact with the victim and offer her $20,000 to drop the charges,” Dillon said. “He says that if $20,000 isn’t enough, then we can refinance the house or sell the house and get her a little more.”
Dillon then testified that he called Lindsey’s girlfriend and, without revealing his identity, told her he knew the alleged victim and had heard she had tried to get in contact with her.
Lindsey’s girlfriend reportedly told police Lindsey was sorry for what happened and wanted to do something to rectify the situation, Dillon said.
“She also told me on the phone that she was a rape victim and she never got a dime from the person that did it to her,” Dillon said in the March preliminary hearing. “At that point, I identified myself. I warned her about tampering with a witness and I asked her not to have any contact with the victim in this case and she agreed that was the best course of action.”