Jul 29, 2010 5:18 PM by Bea Karnes, News First 5

'Ether Man' suspect guilty in Peeping Tom case

Robert Bruce, suspected of being the 'Ether Man' serial rapist who terrorized more than 20 women in six states, was found guilty Thursday in a Pueblo Peeping Tom case.

It was the charges in this case that investigators say led to the attempted murder of a Pueblo police officer and his family, and following Bruce's arrest on those charges, the break in the Ether Man case.

Bruce was set to go on trial on the Peeping Tom charges last October, but didn't show up for court. Meanwhile, out in Pueblo West, the police officer who was scheduled to testify against Bruce, found a propane tank with a hose leading to his garage. If sparked, the device could have killed the officer and his family. After Bruce's arrest on the attempted murder charge, his DNA was entered into the federal crime database. Investigators say his DNA matched the Ether Man.

New Mexico authorities dubbed the serial rapist Ether Man because he used a rag soaked with chemicals to knock-out victims before raping them.

Bruce is still facing attempted murder and rape charges. He's been held in jail since his arrest.


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