Suspect Found Dead

Suspect Found Dead

Police investigation of sexual assault continues.

Fairfax County Police found the body of David L. Ruel Nov. 27 on an athletic field next to his apartment, one day after a search warrant had been executed at Ruel's Herndon home.

Ruel, a former Fairfax County sheriff's deputy who was currently working as a security specialist at Herndon High School, was being investigated for sexually assaulting a 12-year-old boy in 2001.

The 12-year-old, now 18, told police on Nov. 15 that he had been repeatedly assaulted on "an almost daily basis for approximately 18 months" in 2001, according to search warrants filed in Fairfax County Circuit Court. Most of the alleged assaults occurred at Ruel's former apartment on Merrybrook Drive in Herndon.

According to search warrants, police developed "probable cause" to believe the following crimes may have occurred and were in the process of investigating: carnal knowledge of a child 13 to 15 years of age, forcible sodomy, object sexual penetration, aggravated sexual battery, taking indecent liberties with children, causing or encouraging acts rendering children delinquent, and production and publication of child pornography.

Police executed a search warrant of Ruel's apartment at the 2200 block of Astoria Circle on Monday, Nov. 26. The next day, officers returned to the apartment to "check on the welfare of [Ruel]."

"Mr. Ruel was eventually located, deceased, near an athletic field adjacent to his residence," according to the search warrants.

He was found with self-inflicted gun wounds, according to police.

Police requested a search warrant on Nov. 29 to review all data and information stored on Ruel's Blackberry that police found when they discovered his body.

"An investigation is still ongoing. I don't know if it will lead to other people," said Officer Camille Neville. "Obviously, he won't be charged."

Ruel had worked for Fairfax County Public Schools less than a month.

"We do a complete background check on everyone we hire," said schools spokesman Paul Regnier. "We fingerprint them, send it to the FBI, the whole nine yards."

"We heard he died, as for the rest of it — [the criminal investigation] — we heard about it after [his death]," said Regnier.

<1b>— Mirza Kurspahic contributed to this article.