Convicted Rapist Seen in Cambridge

The Harvard Police Department is cautioning members of the Harvard community to beware of a convicted rapist who has recently returned to the area.

A warning published in yesterday's edition of the Yard Bulletin describes the man as a 41-year-old Black male who is 5'8" and 160 pounds.

The newsletter said the man recently approached several first years in a local restaurant.

The police said yesterday they believe the man to be Jean Baptiste, who was convicted in 1991 for raping two Harvard summer school students.

It's a warning to students to be wary," Lt. John F. Rooney said of the advisory statement. Though he's not wanted for anything, his past conduct is somewhat disconcerting."


Baptiste was sentenced to nine to 10 years in prison for the rape of two male summer school students, but was paroled in June 1992 after serving only one year.

Baptiste first approached the summer school students while posing as an admissions officer. He then "served them large quantities of alcohol, brought them back to his apartment, and...engaged them in sex against their will," University officials told the Crimson following the assault.

When the University published a warning in 1990, several other Harvard students said they had been approached by a man fitting Baptiste's description.

Following Baptiste's release, Summer School Dean of students Christopher S. Queen issued a warning after students reported having been approached by Baptiste on two separate occasions.

"We've had dealings with this individual in the past," said Police Chief Paul E. Johnson. He was seen again in the area doing much the same thing and we put out the advisory to warn the students.

Police said the warning was printed in the Yard Bulletin because the target of Baptiste's advances are usually first-year students.

"This guy seems to like the younger set," Rooney said. "Freshmen seem to be the most vulnerable.

"This man usually purports to be affiliated with the University, the warning reads. "He then typically invites a student for dinner and cocktails and after plying him with excessive amounts of alcohol, he sexually assaults him."

The warning statement urges anyone approached by a man fitting their description to immediately notify the Harvard Police.