Rape suspect returned to Virginia

Published 8:43 am Thursday, April 18, 2013

MURFREESBORO – A Virginia man who was held six days in the Hertford County Jail on a charge of rape was extradited north of the border on Tuesday afternoon, according to Franklin (VA) Police spokesman Lt. Tim Whitt.

Steven Gabriel Montano, 30, faced six other charges on his return, Whitt said. Those added charges include abduction with intent to defile, domestic assault and battery, object sexual penetration, six counts of aggravated sexual battery, attempted rape and production of child pornography.

“He came to our attention on April 11 at 5:10 p.m. via Social Services. Family members alleged that Montano has been sexually abusing them over an eight-month period,” Whitt said.

Detectives began their investigation that day and found out that Montano fled to Murfreesboro. He was reportedly arrested there within four minutes after authorities were informed of his presence, according to Murfreesboro Police Chief Darrell Rowe.

Montano was arrested late last week by MPD Officers David Griffith and Doug Wynn following a traffic stop on Main Street.

“From the time we received the information from the Franklin PD that Mr. Montano was believed to be in our town, within four minutes he was wearing handcuffs,” said Rowe. “I’m real proud of that type of response by my officers. This benefits everyone as this quick arrest took a man off the street that reportedly raped a child up in Franklin.”

The chief had previously told The Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald that while awaiting investigators from Franklin, a search warrant was obtained for the vehicle Montano was using.

“Evidence was recovered in that vehicle, which was turned over to the Franklin PD investigators,” Rowe told that newspaper. “Hopefully, the work we did in this case will assist the Franklin PD as they move forward with the prosecution phase of this case.”

Montano will be taken to Western Tidewater Regional Jail with no bond, Whitt said.

R-C News Herald Editor Cal Bryant and Tidewater News (Franklin, VA) Managing Editor Lucy Wallace contributed to this story.