Police say Charlie “Chris” Bates had just finished raping four women at gunpoint after tying up the four men who were with them in a Tampa, Fla. apartment.
Bates then found what he thought was his next victim, a woman sitting on her porch at another apartment complex.
Police say Bates forced the woman inside her unit, made her undress and kiss him, and was about to rape her, according to the Tampa Tribune.
Then she did something amazingly bold and faithful: She began praying.
And she recited John 3:16 from the Bible, the Tampa Bay Times reports.
“For God so loved the world …”
Police say Bates’ whole demeanor transformed.
He apologized to the woman, gave her a shirt, and they prayed together.
She tried to hand him her Bible, but when Bates wouldn’t take it, she ripped pages out and gave them to him, the Times says.
After he left, she called 911.
The prayers probably saved the woman’s life, police said.
Twelve hours later on Friday Bates, 24, was fatally wounded by police after a high-speed chase in which authorities exchanged at least 100 bullets with him. Bates is also suspected of shooting at another man, stealing a friend’s car, and threatening a large group of partygoers during his 14-hour rampage, authorities told the Tribune.
Friday wasn’t the first time that prayer gave Bates pause, police tell the Tribune:
Last month, Bates broke into a house at Busch Boulevard and Rome Avenue. He demanded money, the cell phone and jewelry from the woman who lived there, investigators said. He threatened to rape and kill her.
The woman started to pray and Bates ran away.
While breaking into the house, he cut himself on shards of glass from a shattered window. The blood collected on that day became DNA evidence and a warrant for his arrest was issued on Aug. 30, Tampa police Chief Jane Castor said.
“We could not allow him to go any further,” Sheriff David Gee said after Bates’ death.
Here’s video of the chase and shootout from WFTS-TV on WPTV-TV:
And a report from the Tampa Bay Times:
TheBlaze Editor-in-Chief Scott Baker discussed this story with readers during Monday’s BlazeCast: