Man arrested for sexual assault of Delta Sigma Theta members

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Ashley Terrell
·3 min read
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‘He didn’t do it to me but he didn’t have to do it to me for me to care,’ said Cheryl Smith, a Delta Sigma Theta alum and journalist

Police in Plano, Texas have arrested a man in connection with a 10-year-old sexual assault case. According to WFAA, an ABC affiliate, the arrest could lead to further answers in a series of rape cases which targeted Black alums of Delta Sigma Theta.

Jefferey Lemor Wheat, 48, was arrested in Crawford County, Arkansas on a felony warrant and was later picked up by Arkansas police before being transferred back to Texas where he is currently held on a $500,000 bond at Collin County Detention Center.

Jefferey Lemor Wheat
Jefferey Lemor Wheat

Wheat currently faces a felony sexual assault charge for an incident in April 2011, with arrest documentations connecting his DNA to the crime scene.

According to WFAA officers in the 2011 case communicated with a woman who said she was sexually assaulted in her home and the “suspect knew the victim’s name and used it.” Wheat’s blood was found on the woman’s pillowcase after she bit his hand.

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Wheat reportedly contacted the woman by phone several days later to apologize. Detectives traced the phone call to a payphone at Chevron Food Mart and obtained footage of Wheat from the side of the store at the time of the call.

A few months later in September 2011, Plano Police Department received a bulletin from the Coppell Police Department for a similar sexual assault. WFAA reports that a vaginal swab from a sexual assault kit was used to compare the semen to the blood in the Plano case months prior determined that it was Wheat. Another report from October 2011 connected Wheat to another sexual assault incident.

These cases along with another sexual assault case from 2003 involved four victims who were Black women in their mid-50s to mid-60s and members of the Delta Sigma Thera sorority.

Cheryl Smith, Delta Sigma Theta alum and journalist who covered the cases, said, “I’m overwhlemed, I’m anxious, and I’m angry” in light of Wheat’s arrest.

“He didn’t do it to me but he didn’t have to do it to me for me to care and I wanted other folks to care,” Smith said.

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WFAA’s Jobin Panicker said on Twitter that the Plano Police Department is currently “in communication with several other departments that have open cases.”

Multiple people responded to Panicker’s tweet about Wheat, such as Twitter user Levetta Levels who said, “This has brought horrible memories!! Sorors were terrified! Please convict him!”

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