U.S. Marshals arrest suspected Dallas serial rapist in BR

Van Dralan Dixson is shown in this photo provided by the Dallas Police Department. Authorities have located a car belonging to Dixson, a crime watch volunteer charged in one of nine sexual assaults in South Dallas. Dixson was arrested in Baton Rouge on Tuesday.  (AP Photo/Dallas Police Department)
Van Dralan Dixson is shown in this photo provided by the Dallas Police Department. Authorities have located a car belonging to Dixson, a crime watch volunteer charged in one of nine sexual assaults in South Dallas. Dixson was arrested in Baton Rouge on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Dallas Police Department)

U.S. marshals in Baton Rouge on Tuesday arrested a 38-year-old man suspected of raping four women in Dallas.

U.S. Marshal Kevin Harrison said Van Dralan Dixson, 38, was arrested without incident shortly after 2 p.m. at a hotel on Florida Boulevard.

Harrison said Dixson, according to the U.S. Marshals Service in Dallas, “was a suspect in multiple rapes around the Dallas area.” He said the Baton Rouge office received a tip from the Dallas office that he might be traveling through the area on a bus.

“It is very significant when we get somebody like this,” Harrison said. “We would like to believe that we apprehended him quickly enough that he was not able to commit any crimes.”

Marshals surrendered custody of Dixson to the East Baton Rouge Parish Sheriff’s Office and he will be booked into Parish Prison on a fugitive warrant, Harrison said.

Dallas authorities briefly took Dixson into custody last week and obtained a DNA sample but lacked evidence to bring charges at the time, police Maj. Jeff Cotner said. Dixson was charged Saturday in one of the attacks, but police have been looking for him ever since. His car was found abandoned in a Dallas suburb on Sunday.

Arrest warrants charge Dixson with four counts of aggravated sexual assault. DNA test results from two other attacks were pending, while DNA evidence from two more in the inner-city neighborhood was not available, Cotner said.

Authorities say they believe one man is responsible for nine sexual assaults that have been reported in the Fair Park area of Dallas since June.

In each incident, the attacker approached his victims in the early morning hours, forced them to secluded areas nearby, then robbed and sexually assaulted them.

The assailant in each case was armed with a handgun, wore shorts and a T-shirt, and masked his face using various types of cloth, according to police. The victims said they were approached on foot.