03/19/2014 05:23 pm ET Updated Mar 19, 2014

Former Bush Administration Official Charged With Sexual Assault

A former Bush administration official and lobbyist was arrested Tuesday on charges of sexual assault.

The Washington Post first reported the arrest on Wednesday:

Sloan Wilson Rappoport, 44, of Arlington, was arrested Tuesday after meeting with authorities. The adviser to then-Secretary of Commerce Donald L. Evans approached a 28-year-old woman and struck up a friendly conversation with her in Spanish at a Ross in the 5800 block of Crossroads Center Way on Jan. 31, police said.

As the woman was leaving the store, Rappoport pulled up next to her in his silver-colored Mercedes-Benz and asked her to get in, police said. Rappoport then locked the doors, drove to a nearby location and sexually assaulted her, police said. The victim escaped and fled.

Rappoport faces charges of sexual battery, abduction and obscene display. His attorney, Rodney G. Leffler, told the Post the incident seemed to be "a major misunderstanding."

The lobbying firm Downey McGrath Group previously listed Rappoport as a vice president, with a portfolio ranging from the health care law and financial services to environmental and energy policy. As of Wednesday, Rappoport's bio had been removed from the company's website.

In addition to serving in the Bush administration, Rappoport also worked on Capitol Hill for Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and former Sen. Olympia J. Snowe (R-Maine).