PROVO, Utah (TCD) -- A Rhode Island man who investigators say faked his own death in 2020 to evade sex assault charges was found alive in a Scotland hospital.
According to the Utah County Attorney’s Office, in 2020, the County Attorney’s Office and the Utah Department of Public Safety — State Bureau of Investigation’s Sexual Assault Kit Initiative worked together to create a team that reviewed old sexual assault cases involving assault kits that had never been tested.
Nicholas Rossi reportedly was named as a suspect in a 2008 sexual assault case, but the Utah County Attorney’s Office says the detective closed the case "without referring the case to the Utah County Attorney’s Office for screening."
The sexual assault kit was tested in 2017 and the Utah County Attorney’s Office says the results matched a sexual assault case in Ohio with Rossi as the suspect. The Attorney’s Office worked with investigators and the victim and decided to file charges against Rossi.
According to the statement, however, Rossi "had fled the country to avoid prosecution in Ohio and attempted to lead investigators and state legislators in other states to believe that he was deceased."
Rossi, however, was found alive living under a different name in Scotland. The Utah County Attorney's Office says Rossi went by eight different aliases, which include Nicholas Alahverdian, Nicholas Alahverdian Rossi, Nicholas Edward Rossi, Nicholas Alahverdian-Rossi, and Arthur Knight.
The Scottish Sun reported that Rossi, who was using the alias Arthur Knight, was arrested at Queen Elizabeth University Hospital in Glasgow. He was reportedly admitted because he had COVID-19.
Rhode Island Police Chief Maj. Robert Creamer told The Providence Journal, "He was located in Scotland about a month ago, where he was on a ventilator."
According to The National, a Scottish newspaper, Rossi’s wife said he died of cancer in 2020. In addition to the sexual assault charges, Rossi was being investigated for fraud and extortion because he allegedly owned 22 credit cards and loans using his foster mother’s husband’s name. The National reports he was in debt for about $200,000 and owed his ex-wife at least $60,000.