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DNA from sex assault kit leads to charge against Cass County Jail inmate

Oscar Kayee

FARGO — A Cass County inmate, initially jailed on a robbery charge, now faces a felony count of having sex with a 16-year-old girl after a match was made, authorities say, with his DNA and samples from a sexual assault kit from 2015.

Oscar Kayee, now 26, was 24 years old at the time of the alleged assault. He's charged with sexual assault by a person at least 22 years old who knowingly had sexual contact with a minor 15 years old or older.

Kayee also is awaiting trial on a felony robbery charge involving the use of a gun, according to Cass County District Court documents.

In the sexual assault case, the North Dakota State Lab notified a West Fargo police detective in late December 2017 that a DNA match from a sexual assault kit had been made to a DNA sample taken from Kayee at the jail, court documents said.

According to the documents:

Kayee initially denied recognizing a photo of the victim when interviewed by West Fargo police. However, when told that his DNA matched that in the sexual assault kit, he said he recognized her from a party.

Kayee said he and the victim had gone upstairs to a bathroom and she initiated sexual contact. He acknowledged he had sex with her.

However, in a police report taken Nov. 25, 2015, at Sanford Medical Center in Fargo, the victim said she was at the party and had been asked by three males to go upstairs to smoke marijuana. She then went to an upstairs bedroom, and they began assaulting her. She said she tried to leave and they would not let her.

The victim told police she didn't remember having sex, but that it felt like she did. She said the assault occurred from 2 a.m. to 3 a.m. A friend of the victim, who was also at the party, told police that when she tried to get the victim out of the room, two other males stopped her, court documents said.

Helmut Schmidt

Helmut Schmidt was born in Germany, but grew up in the Twin Cities area, graduating from Park High School of Cottage Grove. After serving a tour in the U.S. Army, he attended the University of St. Thomas in St Paul, Minn., graduating in 1984 with a degree in journalism. He then worked at the Albert Lea (Minn.) Tribune and served as managing editor there for three years. He joined The Forum in October 1989, working as a copy editor until 2000. Since then, he has worked as a reporter on several beats, including K-12 education, Fargo city government, criminal justice, and military affairs. He is currently one of The Forum's business reporters.

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