It has been more than a decade since a local man terrorized a mother and daughter in their Council Bluffs home. And he probably thought he got away with it, too. But the family's memory and DNA put Mark Sands back in prison this week.
Pleasant Street in Council Bluffs was anything but -- on October 25, 2001.
"That was a terrible thing," said Linda Richardson, who lives two houses down from when terror struck her neighbors -- a mother and daughter. "I was hoping they would catch the person right away."
It was nine in the morning when a man broke into the home, tied up the teenage daughter and repeatedly raped her mother.
He was inside the home for three hours.
"Her main priority was her daughter," said Pottawattamie County Chief Deputy Attorney Jon Jacobmeier. "Whenever he would leave to go towards the daughter's room - she would do something to get his attention or cause havoc so he would come back to her. Because she did not want him touching her daughter."
When the boyfriend came home for lunch, it was an opportunity to escape from her attacker.
The woman broke through the back bedroom window and then ran to the neighbor's house -- pounding on the window and breaking that as well.
The attacker, armed with a knife, struggled with the boyfriend.
The kidnapper ran out and the boyfriend followed in his work van.
He got away, but investigators had his DNA.
The break didn't come for a decade. A DNA match identified Mark A. Sands, 51, a convicted sex offender.
A conviction could have gotten him life for the crime in the Bluffs -- but the two sides agreed to a plea this week.
Sands is sentenced to 10 years.
He'll be required to serve at least five.
Jacobmeier says the mother and daughter were satisfied since they wouldn't have to testify at the trial. "They really did not want to go through it again. The deposition itself was traumatic. It was like reliving the rape again. It was like reliving the kidnapping again."
How did investigators get the DNA match?
When Mark Sands moved into an Omaha neighborhood in 2011, he was required to provide a DNA sample since he is a sex offender. He had served time in northeast Iowa for sexual assault in the 1980's.
That sample led to the match.
According to The Hastings Center, as of today -- all states require a DNA sample for sex offenders. Colorado became the first to do it in 1988.