A serial rapist, tied by his DNA fingerprint to a pair of sexual attacks in Cleveland more than 20 years ago has been sentenced.

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CLEVELAND -- A serial rapist, tied by his DNA fingerprint to a pair of sexual attacks in Cleveland more than 20 years ago, has been sentenced to up to 50 years in prison, Cuyahoga County Prosecutor Timothy J. McGinty said Monday.

Kenneth Parker, 55, entered a plea of guilty to three counts of Rape and four counts Kidnapping last week. Cuyahoga County Common Pleas Court Judge Steven E. Gall today sentenced Parker to spend between 16 and 50 years in prison for those crimes.

Parker is now serving an 18-year sentence for two rapes he committed in Columbus in 1996. Judge Gall ordered that the new sentence will commence in August 2015 when Parker otherwise would have been released from state custody.

"But for the DNA evidence, the victims in this case might never have gotten justice, and this serial rapist would have been free next year to resume his attacks on innocent women," said Assistant County Prosecutor Maxwell Martin, who prosecuted Parker for the State of Ohio. "Now this community will remain safe from Mr. Parker's depravity."

DNA evidence recovered by scientists with the Ohio Bureau of Criminal Identification linked Parker to the rapes of two Cleveland women in April and June of 1993. In both cases, he forced victims into vacant dwellings using weapons or the threat of weapons.

In 2012, when BCI tested the sexual assault kits taken in 1993, it found matches to Parker's DNA in the Combined DNA Index System. Those leads were investigated by the DNA Cold Case Task Force of the Cuyahoga County Prosecutor's Office, and Parker was indicted on April 23, 2013.

Organized in March 2013 to pursue leads from BCI's testing of backlogged rape kits, the DNA Cold Case Task Force's work has led to 97 indictments. Parker's is the 24th conviction. Roughly a third of those indicted have been serial rapists implicated in attacks on more than one woman.

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