By WCCO-TV Staff

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – A 19-year-old St. Cloud man has been accused of raping a 15-year-old girl at knifepoint during a high school basketball game in December of 2019.

Robert Epps Jr. was charged with one count of criminal sexual conduct in Stearns County on Wednesday.

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According to the criminal complaint, the girl was attending a basketball game at Apollo High School. She went into the bathroom, and Epps, who was one of her classmates, followed her inside.

She left the stall and tried to walk towards the sink, but Epps grabbed her by the shirt and pushed her against the stall, placing his hand on her throat.

Epps then pulled out his pocketknife, held it to her stomach, and threatened he would cut her if she did not have sex with him, the complaint says. The girl said she would call the police, but Epps threw her on the floor and raped her.

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The girl said that after he left, she cleaned herself up and got a ride home from a friend. She found bruises on her body.

She did not immediately report the incident; investigations began in February of 2020.

When Epps was interviewed in May, he admitted the two were in the bathroom together in December of 2019 but said another person was also in the room. He denied any sexual contact between the two of them, though he said the two sometimes kissed consensually.

If convicted of the crime, Epps could face up to 30 years in prison.

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