Ridgeland rape suspect has criminal history

By LaReeca Rucker

A man released from prison a little more than two months ago has been arrested and charged with the kidnapping and sexual assault of a Ridgeland woman. And it's not the first time the suspect has been accused of rape.

Madison County deputies arrested Antonio “Tony” Derrell Goodman, 22, of Old Jackson Road, Wednesday, Aug. 11, around 8:30 p.m. near his Canton home. He was driving a 1991 White Cadillac.

Goldman was transported to the Ridgeland Police Department, where he was interviewed. The police department issued a press release saying that after initial interviews, “it became apparent Goldman was the correct suspect.”

Evidence obtained from the car, Goodman and witnesses led police to believe the correct individual was arrested. Ridgeland Police Chief Jimmy Houston said authorities received valuable information about the car the suspect was driving, a major factor linking Goodman to the crime.

“We had good information on the tag number,” he said, “but the information we had on was actually inverted.”

Houston said the person who recorded the tag information must have placed the letters in front of the numbers instead of vice versa like they should have been, but police were still able to find the vehicle and make the connection with the information.

“The Madison County deputies ran up on the car last night and realized that the tag number we had was just the opposite of the tag number on the car,” Houston said, “and from there, we ended up at the police station with him. The tag number they gave us started with letters. The tag number on his car started with numbers instead.”

Houston said Goodman’s tattoos also helped with the identification. The 5’5”, 155 lbs. man, who was most recently employed as a pool builder in Byram, had dragon and tribal sign tattoos on his left arm and skull and knife tattoos on his right.

Houston said Goodman did not flee from police and was helpful, cordial and calm. He was also charged with kidnapping .

“After speaking with attorneys, in the current direction we are traveling with the suspect, it is better to charge him with kidnapping because he took her by force and carried her into an area and sexually assaulted her,” Houston said. “He didn’t sexually assault her when he first made contact with her. We are looking at the additional charge of kidnapping so that we can decide exactly what we want to do when we get to that point.”

The rape Goodman is accused of commiting occurred a little more than two months after he was released from the Mississippi Department of Corrections after serving time for strong armed robbery. He was accused of three felonies — burglary of a business, rape and strong armed robbery that allegedly occurred Feb. 7, 2000.

On Count I, He was accused of breaking and entering A & E Sports at 132 Lakeshire Parkway and stealing a Yamaha Grizzly 600 4-wheeler, a duffle bag with assorted clothing and $21.

On Count III, he was accused of raping a woman.

Counts I and III were dismissed, but Goodman was convicted of Count II after pleading guilty to taking $60 from the same woman with force by displaying a gun.

He signed a statement saying he willfully, unlawfully and feloniously knowingly took “the personal property of another against her will by violence or by putting such person in fear of immediate injury by exhibition of a weapon.”

The trial was originally set for July 17, 2000, but was reset five times to July 16, 2002.

Goodman could have received three years to life for the strong armed robbery charge, but he received 15 years with 10 suspended. He was required to serve five years with the Mississippi Department of Corrections and received five years probation.

Goodman entered prison Aug. 15, 2002, and local authorities were notified of his release May 4, 2004, for earned release supervision by Sherry Robinson, director of records. He ultimately served one year and nine months for his crime.

According to MDOC, ERS is an early release incarceration component of the Truth-in-Sentencing statute passed into law July 1995.
An offender must earn his or her participation in the program, which is contingent upon institutional behavior and work ethic. This component reflects the final 15 percent of the offender’s sentence and is accomplished through supervision by a field officer. Any misbehavior or violation results in the offender being returned to prison to serve the balance of his/her sentence in addition to time the offender has been out on ERS.

According to court documents, Goodman has been treated for a “mental or nervous disorder.” He was a patient at Region Eight Mental Health Center in 1996, where doctors treated him for a “hyperactive condition.”

Houston said the Tuesday rape occurred on the trail between Old Canton Road and Rice Road. The victim was jogging at the time, and the suspect was walking. Police did not caution residents to stay away from the walking trails.

“I do believe the trails are safe to exercise on,” Houston said following the crime. “One incident in the past two years, to the best of my memory, is a pretty good indication of its safety.”

Police searched for a black male with braided hair wearing dark, extremely baggy jeans, no shirt and a fanny pack.

The investigation was conducted by the Ridgeland Police Department, the Madison County Sheriff’s Office, the Natchez Trace Park Rangers and the Mississippi Department of Corrections.