Sex offender arrested for Spokane Valley rape


Michael RushCourt documents released Tuesday are offering more details about an assault that happened at a Spokane Valley gas station early Saturday morning.

Registered sex offender Michael Rush was arrested at the gas station near Trent and Vista. Responding deputies saw Rush leaving the gas station bathroom, where a woman in her early 40s was found partially undressed. She told deputies she had been beaten, strangled and sexually assaulted by Rush.

According to court documents, deputies first responded to a robbery alarm at the Cenex Zip Trip. When they arrived they found the lights off in the business that is normally open 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The entrance door was unlocked. When deputies stepped into the gas station they found light coming from underneath the closed restroom door. They also spotted a woman's coat and purse on the counter. 

When deputies detained and handcuffed Rush, they asked him if anyone else was inside, he told the deputies the victim was his wife, according to the documents. He said his wife called him because someone had beat her up. Initially Rush said his wife was not in the restroom but then changed his story and said she was, according to the documents.

The deputies then heard the victim screaming in distress from inside the restroom. She then began dragging herself out of the restroom. 

The documents say the woman was naked except for her shirt and her face was swollen and bloody. She told responding deputies she was raped and strangled and then passed out. She identified the suspect as the man who just left the bathroom. She said she didn't know the man. She said the man's car was parked outside and told deputies where it was. She was then taken to the hospital for treatment. 

Deputies found clothing, and shoes on the floor of the restroom. A search of Rush's pockets turned up the woman's business identification card lanyard, the remote alarm key fob and a pink woman's sock.

The documents say that after Rush was handcuffed and placed in a patrol car, he slipped out of the cuffs and was trying to access the front seat. Deputies secured him again in the car, and he told them he had ingested about a half an ounce of methamphetamine. He was checked out at a hospital before he was taken to be interviewed by Major Crimes detectives. 

According to the documents, the victim told detectives during an interview that Rush had come in the store earlier with a woman and then came back at around 4:22 a.m. asking to turn in lottery tickets. He then came around the counter, told her he had a gun and forced her into the restroom, where he raped her, strangled her and beat her.

The documents say the victim's left side of her face was swollen, her eye was swollen shut, and she had scratches on her neck and chest as well as her abdomen and cuts on her knees. 

Detectives obtained a copy of Rush's criminal history, which included 10 felony convictions, including assault, rape and burglary. He also had at least 10 misdemeanor convictions for violations of domestic violence court orders, assault, obstructing and other offenses. 

Detectives learned that Rush was a Level III sex offender and had just been released from Chelan County Jail on January 11, two days earlier.

The documents say that while Rush was being interviewed, he told detectives in an unsolicited statement that he would be willing to confess to the crime and speak about other victims if he could talk to a female officer officer. Rush had been read his rights before making the statement. The detective agreed and brought in a woman he could speak to, but told Rush he would sit in the room with her for her protection.

Rush refused, saying he wanted to do it in a jail room with her behind glass and alone.

Based on their investigation detectives arrested Rush for first degree rape and second degree assault.

(story: Matt Pusatory, KHQ Local News Web Producer, KHQ.com; photo: Chelan Co. sex offender registry)

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