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Man accused in Spokane rape also convicted in Air Force sexual assaults

SPOKANE, Wash. - A man arrested in Spokane last week for raping a woman he met on an online dating site has a history of accusations of similar assaults while serving in the United States Air Force.

The Air Force confirmed to KXLY4 Tuesday that Michael R. Henry, who was arrested last week, is the same Michael R. Henry who was the subject of a court martial on rape and strangulation charges in Delaware.

According to court documents, Henry was convicted of sexually assaulting a fellow airman and a civilian and was sentenced to a dishonorable discharge and seven years of confinement. But, Henry appealed and some of the charges and parts of the sentence were dismissed.

KXLY has been trying to get answers about that Delaware case since last Thursday. The Air Force said their system is down and they've been unable to provide additional details.

In the Spokane case, Henry is accused of beating and raping a woman. They were on their second date after meeting on the dating site "Plenty of Fish." 

Court records show a similar accusation in the Delaware case. In December 2013, Henry met a civilian on a dating website. After they broke up, the victim said he came to her house uninvited, said he was going to "teach her a lesson" and hit her door with a bat until she opened it. The victim said Henry demanded to see her phone and read through her text messages. He was upset about an email he saw, choked her and threatened her, according to court documents. He then sexually assaulted her.

Around the same time, court documents say Henry met another woman on a different website and started dating her. She said he once choked her until she blacked out and when she regained consciousness, he was sexually assaulting her.  She later blocked his number from her phone, which made him so upset, he beat and sexually assaulted her. 

Henry was convicted, but appealed the conviction and sentence. The United States Air Force Court of Criminal Appeals denied several elements of that appeal. 

"The victims' testimony was powerful," the appeals court wrote. "There is no evidence that the had met prior to the investigation or colluded or even discussed their testimony. They described very similar sexual assaults both in the lead-up and commission. Both testified that [Henry] referred to them using the same unusual, vulgar phrase and asked that they write it on their bodies."

The appeals court did write, though, that there were errors in the initial instructions given by the judge that may have impacted the conviction. Because of that, one part of the conviction was set aside. 

KXLY4 has been working to determine what time Henry served in prison and where. The Air Force has yet to provide that information.

According to Spokane Superior Court records, Henry moved to Nine Mile Falls in October 2018 to live with his parents.

Those court records list six past felonies for sexual assault, all related to military charges from 2015. It also lists his military service as ending in 2018.

He's currently in the Spokane County Jail on charges of rape, kidnapping, burglary and assault with sexual motivation.


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