Arrests made in 2 cold case sexual assaults in Fayetteville

Left: Joshua Mills, Right: Robert Brown (Credit: Fayetteville Police Department)

Fayetteville police have arrested two men in connection with two separate sexual assaults that happened over a decade ago.

On Friday, the Fayetteville Police Cold Case Sexual Assault Unit made an arrest for a rape that happened on Feb. 23, 2003. According to police, it happened near Eastern Boulevard and Martin Luther King Jr. Freeway.

Joshua Mills, 37, has been charged with second-degree rape and assault on a female. Mills is a registered sex offender.

Joshua Mills



The case was investigated but closed due to lack of leads. The Cold Case Unit conducted a review of the case in 2015 and reopened it.

Mills was apprehended in Nash County and transported back to Cumberland County. Mills is being held under a $150,000 secured bond.

Also on Friday, the Fayetteville Cold Case Unit made an arrest for a rape that occurred July 21, 2004. Police said the sexual assault happened in the area of Caledonia Circle and McLamb Drive.

According to authorities, the alleged assailant, 62-year-old Robert Brown, is related to his then 16-year-old victim. He willingly submitted a DNA sample, which was later located in the victim's sexual assault kit.

Robert Brown



Police could not arrest Brown at the time of the investigation because the victim reportedly stopped cooperating. The Cold Case Unit reopened the case in 2015 and arrested Brown on Friday.

Brown is charged with second-degree rape, first-degree kidnapping, incest, and sexual battery.

Brown is being held at the Cumberland County Detention Facility under a $500,000 secured bond.

The Fayetteville Police Department released the following statement:

Here at the Fayetteville Police Department, we believe all rape cases are worth pursuing in court, regardless of the destruction of the sexual assault kits. Because of this pledge, these case files were assembled for the Cumberland County District Attorney's Office to review. After conducting a review of the files, the Cumberland County District Attorney's Office has agreed to pursue prosecution of these cases.

The Fayetteville Police Department Cold Case Sexual Assault Unit will continue making contact with cold case sexual assault and rape survivors and will continue to include these survivors in the decision making process to reopen their investigation. These two arrests are examples of the dedication, commitment, and cooperation between the Cumberland County District Attorney's Office and the Fayetteville Police Department in giving sexual assault and rape survivors a voice, and the justice they all deserve.


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