Hopewell Twp. man charged in rape of York College student, police say

A Hopewell Township man was charged Wednesday in connection with the rape of a York College student in her dorm room in November, according to charging documents.

Nathan Andrew Yankelov, 19, of the 100 block of Crosstie Drive, allegedly raped the 18-year-old woman around 3 a.m. Nov. 18, hours after they were hanging out with a group of friends in the woman’s dorm room, police said.

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York College spokeswoman Mary Dolheimer said by email Friday that Yankelov “is not a student and has never been enrolled at York College.”

According to charging documents, the victim said she was at a party on Friday Nov. 17, with several friends when Yankelov, whom she knew, arrived. The victim told police she had four beers on an empty stomach while at the party. Then she and her friends left the party and went to a convenience store before they went back to her dorm room where they watched a movie and ordered pizza. Yankelov was in the group of friends who went back to the dorm room.

During the early morning hours, Saturday, Nov. 18, the victim told police she was in her pajamas and Yankelov and several of her other friends were still in her dorm room when she was falling alseep. Around 3 a.m., the victim noticed that all of her friends had left her dorm room except Yankelov. 

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The victim was trying to fall asleep when she nudged Yankelov, and he responded by saying “I would not have done that if I were you,” and began to touch her body and take her clothes off, police said in the arrest affidavit. Police said Yankelov began to sexually assault the victim and he put his hands around her neck, making it difficult for her to breathe and speak. 

When the victim tried to stop Yankelov from sexually assaulting her, police said, Yankelov smacked her in the face and told her to be quiet, according to the charging documents. The victim told police the assault was painful and caused her injury.

The victim was examined at York Hospital. The examination showed the victim had bruises on her left breast area, right upper thigh and the right side of her neck; and “a significant amount of abrasions, lacerations, swelling, bruising, and tenderness” to her genitals, police said. The victim had two follow-up examinations because of the injuries she suffered during the sexual assault.

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On Dec. 6, Yankelov spoke with police. During the interview, he admitted to the sexual encounter, but said it was consensual, police said. Yankelov told police the victim was “playing” with his inner thigh before the sexual assault so he figured “it was on,” according to the charging documents.

Yankelov told police he asked the victim three times if the sexual encounter was OK. The first time she didn’t respond, the second time he couldn’t hear her and the third time she uttered “uh-huh,” Yankelov said, according to the arrest affidavit. Yankelov told police that he would have asked five or six times before he would have stopped asking.

Yankelov denied raping the victim, police said, and he stated he had been through “rape training” while he was in the Boy Scouts, police wrote in the charging documents. He told police he thought that the victim filed a report with police as an “attention grab.”

York City Police Department Detective Christopher Perry said in the charging documents that a rape kit had been done and sent to Pennsylvania State Police for forensic examination.

Yankelov was charged with felony counts of rape, aggravated assault, aggravated indecent assault and a misdemeanor count of indecent assault. He was arrested Friday morning by the U.S. Marshals Fugitive Task Force.

Yankelov was arraigned Friday morning by District Judge Douglas F. Meisenhelter, and was sent to York County Prison after he was unable to post $150,000 bail. His preliminary hearing is scheduled for April 2 before District Judge Ronald J. Haskell Jr.

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