Charges dismissed against two Wisconsin men held since last year in alleged Willmar rape and assault

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Jul. 20—WILLMAR

— Kandiyohi County has dismissed all charges against two Wisconsin men arrested last year in the alleged rape and assault of a Willmar woman.

Davion Elijha Powell, 20, and Marquiese Lafay Peet-Williams, 24, both of Racine, Wisconsin, have been held in the Kandiyohi County Jail since last year.

Each man had faced seven charges related to the incident reported in July 2021: six felony counts that included criminal sexual conduct, assault and theft and one count of misdemeanor theft. All charges were dismissed Tuesday in Kandiyohi County District Court.

According to court documents, the men were said to have met a Willmar woman on July 30, 2021, at the Mall of America and later went to her Willmar home where she had other friends visiting.

After her friends left, the men were alleged to have raped the woman and carved into her body with a knife or scissors.

According to the dismissal filed Tuesday by the Kandiyohi County Attorney's Office in each man's case, new evidence was gathered recently, including a partial video.

"A review of the evidence shows the charges cannot be proven beyond a reasonable doubt," the dismissal reads.

The two men remain in custody pending extradition to Wisconsin. Each of them appeared Wednesday morning in Kandiyohi County District Court on a charge of being a fugitive from justice from another state.

According to the complaint, there are six active warrants against Powell in Wisconsin for charges that include child abuse, domestic violence, criminal damage to property, disorderly conduct, battery and bail jumping.

The complaint against Peet-Williams says there is an arrest warrant against him in Wisconsin for disorderly conduct, domestic abuse surcharge, habitual criminality and bail jumping.

Both men are being held without bail, and the court calendar shows an Aug. 4 review hearing for each of them.