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Alleged ‘East Coast Rapist’ Angling For Insanity

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(Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

(Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images)

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MANASSAS, Va. (AP) — A preliminary hearing for the man accused by prosecutors as the East Coast Rapist has been postponed after his lawyer requested a court-ordered mental evaluation of his client.

Authorities believe that 40-year-old Aaron Thomas is responsible for rapes and other attacks on 17 women from Virginia to Connecticut over the span of a decade.

A hearing had been scheduled for Wednesday in Manassas on the most recent attack — the Halloween 2009 abduction of three teenage trick-or-treaters in Woodbridge. Two were raped before Thomas was forced to flee.

Thomas’ court-appointed attorney, Ronald Fahy, said in a motion that Thomas has engaged in self-destructive behavior and refuses to communicate with him.

The hearing has been rescheduled for March 1. He faces up to life in prison.

(© Copyright 2011 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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