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Chesterfield man charged with rape; police believe there are more victims

Officer: 'The last thing we want is somebody suffering in silence where they don't feel like they can come forward'
Chesterfield County Police
Posted at 10:35 AM, Sep 01, 2023

CHESTERFIELD COUNTY, Va. — Officers have arrested a 27-year-old man for an alleged sexual assault and they believe there may be more victims.

Chesterfield County Police said the alleged assault happened on July 13 when Matthew Kyle Kirkland of Chesterfield met up with a woman he knew after meeting through a social media platform. Police did not specify which social media platform it was.

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Matthew Kyle Kirkland

Kirkland and the victim had met before the alleged assault happened at a home, but police did not say how many times the two had met before.

Police said the victim reported the incident the next day.

"There were interviews conducted and further follow ups done," Lt. John Payne with the Chesterfield Police Special Victims Unit said. "And once we received what we needed to for our investigation, that's where we proceeded with the charges and arrested the suspect.

Kirkland was arrested on Aug. 30 and charged with charged with rape, two counts of object sexual penetration, abduction, attempted strangulation, aggravated sexual battery and forcible sodomy.

He is being held at the Chesterfield County Jail without bond as a magistrate deemed him a flight risk because of the severity of the charges.

Kirkland is slated to appear in court next in October.

Police believe there could be additional victims and are urging them to come forward.

"Anytime you have anybody that meets on a online platform, normally, it's not the first time that this has happened. So we just want to make sure that if someone was scared about going forward previously that they have that option to come forward now," Payne said. "The last thing we want is somebody suffering in silence where they don't feel like they can come forward."

Chesterfield Police Lt. John Payne
Chesterfield Police Lt. John Payne

Payne urged anyone using a social media platform to meet people to take extra precautions.

"Be very careful who you meet online," Payne said. "Be very careful who you trust online. And definitely don't put yourself in a situation where you could become a potential victim."

If you have information that could help detectives, call Chesterfield County Police at 804-748-1251 or Crime Solvers at 804-748-0660.

This is a developing story, so anyone with more information can email newstips@wtvr.com to send a tip.

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