HOUSTON - A Fort Bragg soldier accused of kidnapping and sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl in Cypress had his first court appearance in Harris County Tuesday.
The suspect, U.S. Army Private Levi Austin Goss, 24, sat silently in court.....coldly staring straight ahead, then approached the bench grasping a Bible as the judge set his combined bond at $1 million.
"I was hired to represent him here. He was extradited back from North Carolina here," Attorney George Parnham said after the court appearance.
Goss' family hired Parnham, the famed local defense attorney is known for representing Andrea Yates in the 2001 landmark case where Yates was convicted of drowning her five children in a bathtub.
"Any case that comes through my door, particularly a case in this fashion, is difficult," Parnham said.
Parnham says his current client will plead not guilty.
Although it's been five years since the horrific crime, Harris County officials never gave up on finding the culprit in this nearly cold case and now they say they have their man.
Authorities say the teenage victim was beaten, raped and left for dead, naked in a wooded area in Cypress.
The victim told authorities she was randomly attacked while walking alone along Cypress Woods Road late at night when she was hit in the head with an ax.
She says she was dragged into the woods and raped before being hit in the head with the ax a second time!
She believes she survived by playing dead until the suspect was gone.
Investigators indicate it was DNA from a rape kit that finally matched a suspect five years later, none other than Private First Class Goss!
Parnham also revealed that Goss' mother currently lives in Magnolia, Texas.
So, how could an active-duty soldier have committed such a grisly act? As the case goes to trial, more will be revealed.