Former Sac State lecturer charged in decades-old violent sex crimes

Suspect made first court appearance Friday

Mark Manteuffel was arrested on June 28 and charged with three violent rapes that occurred in the early '90s. Manteuffel spent time at Sac State as both a student and a part-time lecturer.

Courtesy of Sacramento County District Attorney

Mark Manteuffel was arrested on June 28 and charged with three violent rapes that occurred in the early '90s. Manteuffel spent time at Sac State as both a student and a part-time lecturer.

Jordan Silva-Benham, News editor

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A Sacramento State alumnus and former lecturer was charged with three counts of rape from the early ‘90s following California’s first ever “placeholder arrest warrant” using only DNA evidence, according to the Sacramento County District Attorney. 

On July 1, Sacramento County District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert, Sacramento Police Chief Daniel Hahn, Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones, and Yolo County District Attorney Jeff Reisig announced Mark Manteuffel’s arrest at a press conference.

According to Schubert, Manteuffel was charged with two counts of torture with a knife, three counts of rape plus infliction of bodily harm with a knife and one count of sodomy.

A “John Doe warrant” was issued on March 21, 2000, two days before the statute of limitations was set to run out, Schubert said. This “placeholder arrest warrant” was the first of its kind in California, being filed against a suspect identified only by their DNA. 

A John Doe warrant is a warrant for the arrest of a person whose identity is not known.

According to Brian Blomster, Sac State’s director of news and communication, Manteuffel attended the school in the ‘80s and began as a substitute instructor in 1992. Manteuffel was hired as a part-time lecturer in the spring of 1993 before leaving the school on Jan. 4, 1994.

Manteuffel’s time at Sac State was followed by nearly two decades as an employee of the Federal Bureau of Prisons before retiring in 2014 in Miami, Florida, according to Hahn.

He was arrested in Decatur, Georgia on June 28, according to a local news report from CBS Atlanta, and expedited to Sacramento.

Manteuffel is charged with seven crimes committed over three instances in Sacramento and Yolo county between 1992 and 1994. 

On May 5, 1992, a 52-year-old woman entered her home to find a masked stranger and “was almost immediately accosted and assaulted” for three hours, according to Jones

In January 1994, a 22-year-old student in Davis was jogging when a masked man tased her before committing what Reisig described as  “monstrous crimes.”

Finally, on March 23, 1992, a woman in East Sacramento came home to find a masked man who sexually assaulted her multiple times, Hahn said. 

Nearly two decades later, Manteuffel was matched to DNA collected from the crime scenes.

“Without our ability to use DNA and genetic genealogy we would not have this predator in custody right now, and maybe never would,” Hahn said.

Genetic genealogy, according to an article published in the San Francisco Chronicle, is the practice of using online genealogy tests in order to link DNA through their family trees, and can help identify criminals. Last year, it aided law enforcement in identifying and arresting the infamous East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer.

“This case represents so much — the dedication of law enforcement, the importance of keeping rape kits and testing those kits no matter how long ago those crimes occurred,” Schubert said.

Manteuffel appeared for his arraignment Friday at the Sacramento Courthouse and is due for his bail hearing and settlement conference on July 22.

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