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Beauty Queen: Christian Dating Site Rape Suspect Threatened Me

Two new charges were filed against Sean Banks, the man accused of raping a woman he met on the website ChristianMingle.com

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    NEWSLETTERS

    Victoria Kinney tells NBC4 that she was a potential victim of a man charged with raping a woman he met on a Christian dating website. Kinney on Friday was awarded a restraining order against Sean Banks, who faced new allegations in a San Diego court. Kathy Vara reports for the NBC4 News at 11 p.m. on March 1, 2013. (Published Friday, Mar 1, 2013)

    A California beauty queen has claimed she was a potential victim of a man charged with raping a woman he met on a Christian dating website.

    Sean Banks, 37, of Del Mar, is accused of raping a woman he met through ChristianMingle.com in November.

    Beauty Queen Claims Rape Suspect Threatened Her

    [DGO] Beauty Queen Claims Rape Suspect Threatened Her
    Victoria Kinney claims she met Sean Banks, a man suspect of rape, through a dating site. She alleges Banks threatened her. (Published Friday, Mar 1, 2013)

    And now, a contestant in the Miss California 2012 pageant claims Banks threatened her while out on bail.

    "He was aware that I had evidence and he started intimidating me from that point not to talk to police," Victoria Kinney said.

    Man Accused of Raping Woman He Met on Dating Website

    [DGO] Man Accused of Raping Woman He Met on Dating Website
    A Del Mar man was arrested, accused of raping a La Mesa woman he met through the dating website ChristianMingles.com. NBC 7's Nicole Gonzales reports. (Published Saturday, Feb 16, 2013)

    Banks faces a number of charges including rape by force, digital penetration by force and residential burglary in connection with an alleged attack in La Mesa more than three months ago.

    In that case, a La Mesa woman told police Banks arrived at her home on Nov. 12, was sexually aggressive toward her and ultimately raped her. Banks was arrested by La Mesa police on Feb. 11.

    "This woman is alleging that he pushed the boundaries and attempted to have sexual intercourse with her against her will. We think when you see all the facts that will prove not to be the case," said defense attorney Gretchen von Helms.

    Banks, a graduate student of Pepperdine University and a former Lt. JG in the U.S. Navy, appeared in an El Cajon courtroom Friday to face two additional criminal charges.

    One of the charges involves a date rape allegation from 2009 and the second charge involved dissuading a witness, or threatening a witness not to talk with police.

    Kinney, Miss Irvine-Orangewood in the 2012 Miss California pageant, said she met Banks through the ChristianMingle website.

    Banks used an alias in their communication, said Kinney's attorney, Daniel Gilleon.

    Investigators said Banks has been known to use several aliases online including Rarity, Rylan, Rylan Butterwood and Rylan Harbough.

    The beauty queen said Banks was very charming at first but then he made comments that she took as threats.

    "I didn’t listen to my instincts," she said. "In those instances and looking back, I absolutely should have."

    "We discussed meeting for lunch when I returned and when I returned, he called me to let me know he had been arrested for rape," she added.

    Gilleon said his client was terrified, but wanted to testify about her experience to support other possible victims.

    "She’s a Christian woman. She believes it’s her duty at this point to come forward, share her story generally and ask other women to come forward," Gilleon said.

    He said the comments made by Banks to Kinney were "clearly threats."

    As a result, Judge Charles Ervin approved on Friday a protective order banning Banks from having contact or getting within 100 yards of Kinney.

    Banks was taken into custody on a "no bail request" on the new charges even though he had posted $500,000 bail on his previous charges.

    Judge Ervin called it a unique request and told defense attorneys he had never seen the situation in 25 to 30 years.

    Von Helms said she and her co-counsel Jan Ronis had no time to review the additional charges and asked for a bail review early next week.

    "Anyone would feel terrible about these types of allegations and he certainly does," Von Helms said of Banks.

    "This young man -- he’s a Ph.D. candidate. He’s a college graduate. He served in the military. There are a lot of good factors about him that will come to light as we proceed in this case," she said.

    A preliminary hearing is scheduled for March 26.