Alleged rapist who fled to Oregon behind bars in Pinal County

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PHOENIX and APACHE JUNCTION, Ariz. -- A sexual assault suspect who fled to Oregon over the summer is now behind bars in Pinal County.

On Aug. 4, a woman told Phoenix police that she was kidnapped and raped in Apache Junction by an acquaintance named Steven Lee James.

According to the victim, James assaulted her several times at knife point in his vehicle and then drove her to several Phoenix-area ATMs and forced her to withdraw money so he could leave the state.

James, 47, and the victim ended up at the Circle K at 15th Avenue and Thomas Road in Phoenix. A clerk called 911 when the victim and James got into an argument. At that point, James fled the scene, leaving behind his knife and his vehicle.

The Pinal County Sheriff's Office got an arrest warrant that allowed for James' extradition. James was found in Oregon last week and has been extradited back to Arizona.

He was booked into the Pinal County Adult Detention Center on Wednesday, Dec. 22. He faces six counts of sexual assault, kidnapping, armed robbery and trafficking in stolen property.

“Justice will be served on this case because of the great work done by detectives from the Pinal County Sheriff’s Office and Phoenix Police Department," said Pinal County Sheriff Paul Babeu. "James is a violent sexual predator who tormented and sexually assaulted his victim. Predators may think they can hide after committing their offense, but law enforcement will not relent in our pursuit of them so they can be held accountable for their actions and brought to justice."

James is being held on $256,000 bond.