Who the (Bleep) Did I Marry? is investigating the crimes of Jeffrey Marsalis, who was found guilty of rape and sexual assault against many different women in Philadephia, PA and Sun Valley, Idaho.
Marsalis preyed on women using a fake dating profile. The fraudster claimed to be many things over many years, including a trauma surgeon, an astronaut, a pilot, a Navy officer, and a secret agent working for the CIA.
Unfortunately, his lies continued away from online dating profiles and into real life. He even told his wife, Jessika Rovell, that he was a doctor and a Navy officer.
Marsalis’s lies were not harmless. He used his fake personas to lure women into sexual attacks.
Rovell would later say her husband exhibited plenty of red flags; he would spend extended periods away when she had no clue where he was. Marsalis would tell her he was on a secret mission for the CIA, but the police suspect he was really committing sexual crimes.
“It was convincing,” Rovell told ABC News, “He had a CIA screensaver with the seal on his computer. He had a fingerprint reader to access his computer. He had guns. He had a bulletproof vest.”
Jessika Rovell said Jeffrey Marsalis threatened to kill a member of her family
But things became even more sinister when Marsalis began threatening Rovell. When she tried to leave him, he threatened to kill a member of her family.Watch the Latest on our YouTube Channel
In total, 21 women in the Philadelphia area came forward to say Marsalis had attacked them between 2001 and 2005. He was charged with rape in eight of those cases, but after two trials, he was convicted of the lesser charge of two counts of sexual assault.
Marsalis was sentenced to 21 years in prison.
The police in Sun Valley, Idaho, learned he had committed a rape in their jurisdiction in Ketchum in October 2005.
Jeffrey Marsalis convicted of rape in Idaho case
Marsalis had picked up a 21-year-old employee of a Sun Valley condominium and taken her to a bar. The victim became intoxicated and incapable and, by her own testimony, entered an amnesia-like “blackout” state. The rapist then forced himself on her.
The rapist was accused of drugging his victim; however, tests for a date rape drug were inconclusive. But Prosecutor Jim Thomas summed up the case for jurors, “The defendant is accused of having sexual intercourse with a female who was unconscious due to an intoxicating substance. That is not consensual sex. It’s rape.”
In 2009, Marsalis was found guilty of felony rape and sentenced to life in prison with the possibility of parole after 15 years. He must serve his first sentence in Pennslyvania before he is transferred to Idaho to serve at least 15 years.
Who the (Bleep) Did I Marry? airs Mondays at 9/8c on Investigation Discovery.