The Free Press, Mankato, MN

February 27, 2014

Man arrested in Mankato for assault, attempted rape

By Josh Moniz

---- — MANKATO — A man is accused of forcing his way into a woman's apartment and sexually assaulting her Feb. 19 in Mankato.

Geral Leanerd Halbert Jr., 25, who does not have a permanent address, was charged with first-degree burglary, fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct, fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct and fifth-degree assault.

According to the criminal complaint, police responded to a call that a woman had fled her apartment after being assaulted and that Halbert had locked himself inside the woman's residence.

When police spoke with the victim, she said Halbert, whom she had met before, tried to forcibly remove her clothing and attempted to rape her. Police officers noted the victim had a black shirt that was ripped on the bottom.

When police knocked on the victim's door, Halbert left with his pants on backward and a shirt stuck in his left pant leg, according to the complaint. He was arrested at the scene.

During her subsequent interview with police, the victim said Halbert was living with a woman they both knew. She said Halbert and the woman arrived at her residence at about 8 p.m. She said Halbert arrived intoxicated. She said she was left alone with Halbert when the other woman left to get food.

She said she locked Halbert outside of her apartment when he went outside. She said he later knocked on the door and claimed he was with the woman they both knew. She said he forced his way in the apartment when she opened the door. She said he attempted to remove her clothing, licked her face and started grinding against her. She said she was telling Halbert "No" and "Stop" during his actions, according to the complaint.

The victim told police she claimed she needed a cigarette and threw it at Halbert. She said she used the opportunity to run to her neighbor's apartment.

When interviewed by police, Halbert provided several different versions of the events in the apartment. He initially claimed the victim left for food with their mutual acquaintance without incident. He later claimed he had some sexual contact with the woman but stopped when she asked. After that, he claimed he had sexual intercourse with the woman and that she never said "No," according to the complaint.

The complaint notes that Halbert has multiple convictions for assault and domestic assault, including for fifth-degree assault in Blue Earth County in May 2012.