Copperas Cove man arrested for sexual assault of a child
By LYNETTE SOWELL
A 26-year-old Copperas Cove man is behind bars in the Coryell County Jail on $500,000 bonds on sexual assault charges.
Rashad Valento Parkinson was arrested by Copperas Cove police on Nov. 3 for aggravated sexual assault of a child and sexual abuse of a child continuous, with the victim being younger than 14.
Given the pseudonym “Michelle Leard” in the arrest report, the girl was interviewed by Copperas Cove police and identified Parkinson in a lineup.
The 12-year-old victim told police that she had met Parkinson on Instagram when she saw an ad to purchase vapes.
She also said she’d told Parkinson she was 13. In turn, he had told her that he was 17 years of age.
The arresting officer wrote that he learned that Parkinson “would sell vapes to young girls as a pretext to speak to them personally.”
According to the affidavit, Parkinson and Leard met up from February 2020 until July 2021.
He would pick her up and bring her to a residence on North 23rd Street in Copperas Cove, and the two had sexual intercourse on at least five occasions, even after Leard said she had told him she did not want to.
Then things escalated to aggravated sexual assault, when Parkinson picked up Leard and took her to the area of apartments behind Copperas Cove Junior High School.
When she refused sexual activity in his vehicle, Leard said that he punched her several times and then choked her almost to the point of losing consciousness. After that, he told her to leave the vehicle. She said he then changed all of his social media accounts so she could not locate him.
The victim told police “she knew that there were other young girls who had sex with Rashad.”
According to the report, Copperas Cove police were notified by Fort Hood CID that they were working a sexual assault of a child investigation and had identified Parkinson as a suspect.
Parkinson had previously been arrested in May 2021 by Lampasas police on a warrant for sexual assault of a child. He was indicted by a Lampasas County grand jury in July 2021 for the charge.