Benton restaurant owner charged with sexual assault now facing new charges including rape, burglary

Benton restaurant owner charged with sexual assault now facing new charges including rape, burglary

Editor’s Note: Officials with the Benton Police Department originally stated additional victims had spoken with investigators but later updated that to clarify that there were additional claims made by the existing victims.

BENTON, Ark. – Police in Benton said a local restaurant owner who was already facing charges of sexual assault was arrested again Wednesday and faces new accusations.

Officials with the Benton Police Department said 46-year-old Timothy Steppach turned himself in to investigators without incident.

Benton police arrest suspect in sexual assault incidents, detectives seek additional information

Steppach was originally arrested on Jan. 25 on two counts of fourth-degree sexual assault. Police records showed Steppach, who owns Tim’s Tavern on Edison in Benton, was accused of assault by two employees, ages 14 and 15.

He spoke out on social media and denied the claims against him, declaring his innocence.

“I just want to thank everyone for their support during this difficult time. I am innocent of these allegations, and it will be proven so when the time comes,” Steppach posted. “I know where these attacks are coming from and the truth will prevail. I appreciate everyone that has reached out to me and appreciate all of the prayers. They do not go unheard.”

Benton restaurant owner claims innocence amid sexual assault charges by teen employees

Following Steppach’s arrest, authorities said the victims came forward with additional information leading investigators to seek more charges.

Detectives said the new counts Steppach is facing include felony charges of rape and residential burglary, as well as misdemeanor charges of fourth-degree sexual assault, third-degree assault, false imprisonment and interference with emergency communications.

Timothy Steppach booking photo – image courtesy Saline County Detention Center
Timothy Steppach booking photo – image courtesy Saline County Detention Center

He was booked into the Saline County Detention Center but bonded out Wednesday afternoon.

Benton police say the investigation is ongoing and ask anyone with information on this case to contact Detective Wisenor at 501-776-5947.

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