Man reportedly kidnaps, sexually assaults Springfield women

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SPRINGFIELD, Fla. (WMBB) — Residents of Springfield are still in shock after learning of a violent attack on Friday.

Investigators said Jason Dowdell, 38, reportedly kidnapped three women, and sexually assaulted two of them.

The incident began Friday morning at a home on Russ Lake Drive in Springfield.

Authorities said two sisters, ages 17 and 19, said they saw Dowdell standing outside their door.

They reportedly recognized him from the neighborhood and open the door. Authorities said that’s when Dowdell allegedly forced his way into the home, tying up and blindfolding both women.

Investigators said he then repeatedly sexually assaulted them for the next six hours.

When their mother returned home, police said Dowdell attacked, choked and held her at knife-point.

He reportedly left the home after 5 p.m. Friday evening. The women then called for help.

Springfield Police Chief Barry Roberts said the women were allegedly threatened that they would be killed if they got in contact with law enforcement.

“But, yet, they were strong… They stood up for themselves,” Chief Roberts said. “I’m so very proud of how strong they were, mentally, to do the right thing.”

Dowdell has a history of being violent. He served time in Mississippi for armed robbery with a gun and a homicide.

He was recently arrested in Springfield for burglary, but got out of the Bay County Jail just seven days ago for an unknown reason.

Dowdell is now back in jail. He is charged with three counts of kidnapping and aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, two counts of sexual battery and one count of armed burglary.

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