A 37-year-old Columbus truck driver wanted in Clay County for burglary and attempted rape is snagged at a California truck inspection station.
Maurice Sentell Reliford was caught at the Donner Pass inspection station on Oct. 21 when California inspectors found his license wasn’t in order and his name came up as being wanted in Clay County. He was returned to West Point late Wednesday night.
The arrest comes 30 months after he was released from the Mississippi Department of Corrections after serving 15 years for child abuse in Lowndes County, receiving stolen property in Benton County and possession of drugs in a prison in Marion County.
Reliford is accused on breaking into a 34-year-old Clay County woman’s home on Highway 50 West on July 15, 2019, and trying to rape her. The two were dating, according to Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott.
Clay County Sheriff’s investigators have been looking for him since then.
He was indicted by the Clay County Grand Jury in October and caught less than two weeks after the indictment was returned.
He is indicted as a habitual offender because of his prior record, meaning he could face up to life in prison if convicted on the new charges.
Reliford’s record is a long one, dating back to his arrest in Lowndes County for rape and child abuse in connection with an Oct. 16, 2001, incident involving a mother and daughter who lived on Downs Road near Columbus Air Force Base at the time.
Reliford was 19 at the time.
On May 26, 2004, a Lowndes County jury found him not guilty of the rape charge but guilty of beating the child. Reliford was 22 at the time of the trial.
Judge Lee Howard sentenced Reliford to 15 years. He already had been convicted in 2002 in Benton County of receiving stolen property.
And while serving his prison sentence, he was arrested in 2007 for having drugs in prison and convicted in 2010 in Marion County, according to court records.
He was released from prison on April 17, 2017, according to court records.