Soldier accused of attempted rape, battery of woman

Almost a month after an encounter with a woman at Willow Creek Apartments, a Fort Benning soldier has been jailed on an attempted rape charge, Columbus police said.

Juan L. Cerda, 33, was arrested Tuesday and also charged with aggravated sexual battery and false imprisonment of a 33-year-old woman at the apartment complex off Buena Vista Road. He is held without bond in the Muscogee County Jail for an 8 a.m. hearing Thursday in Recorder’s Court.

Cerda is assigned to 1st Battalion, 15th Infantry Regiment, Headquarters Company, a unit of the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team, 3rd Infantry Division at Fort Benning, said Elsie Jackson, a public affairs spokeswoman.

Cerda was arrested about 12:30 p.m. at the military police guard station at Fort Benning. His arrest stems from an incident in a model apartment that occurred on Oct. 17 but wasn’t reported until Oct. 23. Inside the apartment, police said physical force was used against the victim.

The woman wasn’t injured in the assault, police said.