A 39-year-old Waldorf woman was raped Saturday night, and police believe the man they suspect in the attack has fled Charles County.

The Charles County Sheriff's Office said the rape occurred about 9:30 p.m. in the 3200 block of Old Washington Road in Waldorf. A man forced a woman into a dark area and sexually assaulted her, then forced her to drive him and his dog to the intersection of Berry Road and Trumpeter Court, where he fled into the woods, police said.

Capt. Joseph Montminy of the sheriff's office said the suspect, Michael David Harbin30, has been living in the woods since his release from prison Oct. 8.

"We don't believe he's in Charles County," Montminy said. "We believe he's hitchhiking and still in the company of his dog. He's headed south, from what a few witnesses said."

In November 1994, Harbin pleaded guilty to indecent exposure, according to papers in District Court. The documents show that he was arrested for masturbating in front of two girls ages 7 and 8.

In December 1995, Harbin pleaded guilty to a fourth-degree sex offense, according to court papers. The papers say that Harbin, then 20, was staying at the house of a 14-year-old boy who awakened to find Harbin fondling him.

"I would have no problem doing the time if I actually did the sex offense," Harbin said in a 1996 letter to Judge Robert C. Nalley, which was kept in Harbin's file. "I know in my heart that I did not do the sex offense, and it hurts me bad. When I was out I was trying my hardest not to get into trouble."

In 1996, Harbin's parents, James and Linda Harbin, asked the judge to release their son early or to transfer him to a Job Corps placement. The letter said that "David has had learning disabilities and emotional problems all his life" and that he rarely left his cell in prison for fear of the other inmates.

Harbin was arrested again in 1997, this time for carjacking and assault. He was convicted of assault, the record shows, and served seven years in jail.

Harbin is described as 6 feet 4 inches tall and approximately 180 pounds. He has brown hair and blue eyes. Anyone with information about him should call Crime Solvers at 866-411-TIPS.

Staff researcher Bobbye Pratt contributed to this report.