Neighbors react after 80-year-old arrested on rape charge

Mugshot of William Graham. (Provided Photo/Howard County Jail)

KOKOMO, Ind. (WISH) — People in Kokomo are on edge following the arrest of an 80-year-old on rape charges.

A woman told police it happened Sunday night on Lafountain Street.

According to Kokomo police the woman went to the man’s house to sell him a tablet. It’s not clear how this transaction was initiated, but police say it didn’t originate online.

The 29-year-old woman says she was held against her will at gunpoint.

Police arrested William Graham for rape, armed robbery and confinement.

24-Hour News 8 was able to speak with the man’s brother, who says this is out of character for him.

“I worry about my grandkids and my nephew’s kids — they play out here all the time,” said Jim Cummings, who lives nearby. “Makes you wonder what goes on inside the rest of the houses around here.”

The woman called police just before 6 a.m. Monday. After a five-hour stand off with Kokomo police and SWAT, Graham surrendered without incident.

“He moved in here a few months ago. And I didn’t think we’d have that kind of trouble out of him,” said Cummings.

Also arrested was 56-year-old Robert Meriwether. He was in the house during the standoff. Police haven’t connected him with the rape case. He’s charged with failure to appear on a warrant.

“We really have to keep our children close and keep an eye on what’s going on because you never know — your neighbor could be a molester or a rapist or a murderer, so you have to be careful out here,” said Antonio Wiley, who lives nearby.

Medics took the woman to an Indianapolis hospital. She suffered minor injuries.

Officials haven’t yet released the probable cause for Graham’s arrest.

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