Two men from St. Louis have been implicated in a rape and home invasion incident that happened in late 2012. The men, both 21 years old, are facing felony charges of forcible rape, robbery, burglary, kidnapping and other accusations. Authorities report that they are currently in custody in lieu of a suggested $250,000 bail.

Investigators say the men are accused of breaking into an apartment on Chippewa Street on the night of Nov. 21, 2012. Three people in the apartment were reportedly held at gunpoint as the suspects took money and electronics, including video game consoles, televisions, tattoo machines, computers, printers and other devices. One of the people in the apartment was an 18-year-old woman who accused one of the suspects of dragging her into a bedroom and raping her.

Authorities reportedly apprehended the pair after locating a vehicle that one of the men had borrowed without permission. The man's mother had notified police after she noticed that he took her vehicle. Officers attempted to pull the driver over, but the pair of suspects fled, eventually crashing the car and attempting to run on foot. Three other men in the car remained in the vehicle, where officers reportedly found firearms and drugs. It is not clear whether the other occupants were charged in connection with any crimes.

Media reports have not indicated whether the men are linked to the crime through witness testimony alone, or if forensic evidence may factor into the charges. In cases involving rape charges, authorities may have obtained forensic data from a rape kit, which is generally performed at a hospital emergency room. Rape accusations may be difficult to prove without the genetic material provided through such an investigation.

The men have not yet entered a plea in connection with the reported crimes. If they choose to enter a guilty plea in the matter, they may be able to bargain for shorter prison time. In fact, they may be able to avoid jail altogether, depending on their attorneys' legal maneuvers. The men should weigh the evidence against them to determine whether a guilty plea would be suitable instead of a jury trial.

Source: St. Louis Post-Dispatch, "Two St. Louis men charged in rape, home invasion," Joel Currier, Jan. 25, 2013